healthcare.gov opens at midnight on the day of the government shutdown and lambert finds a bug
[And if you have your own experiences to share, and especially screen dumps, please add them in comments or contact me. Either Federal Exchanges, or state exchanges. I'm especially interested in Covered California! Thank you! --lambert]
firstname.lastname@example.org from Maine had a registration #FAIL at step 3. Here's the screen dump:
The dropdown should be a security question, like "The name of my first pet is," "Or the name of my favorite Aunt is." No dropdown. I did notice a snippet of code flash by earlier, but foolishly refreshed before capturing it.
So, er, a glitch. Maybe something tiny that Obama's tech dudes are fixing even as I write. But this is my experience, FWIW!
It's also an onerous and unpleasant registration process, with unhelpful documentation on how to pick a password. This is better. Couldn't Obama have gotten Jony Ive to do this thing, or something?
UPDATE Here are several confirmations of registration problems at NC. As Corrente readers know, the ObamaCare rollout is not like a political campaign; it is a political campaign. So, signing up
victims consumers is just like voter turnout. Therefore, a registration #FAIL is the most basic and simple #FAIL there is. It's the equivalent of not having gas in the car that's supposed to take seniors to the polling place, or having a server meltdown for the system that's supposed to instance message bearded hipsters on their iPhones. Obamacare is Obama's Project Orca -- except election day is one day, and -- as Democrats will be quick to point out -- there are many days to work out the bugs with ObamaCare's websites. At which point the fundamental flaws will become evident!
UPDATE One Kossack's experience. This guy got a lot farther than I did:
So I took my own advice. I have been breathless with excitement [This is Kos, so this may have been literally true], waiting until October 1 like a kid on Christmas eve, to find out what plans will be available to me and what they will cost.
Well, my experience has been everything Fox "News" and the Teabagistani Ministry of Propaganda have said it would be. Maybe a bit worse.
First of all, and this is a fundamental complaint: no, you can't just "shop for coverage" and "compare plans". I fully expected that the first screen i would see would be a screen for my state, with all available plans - from bronze to platinum - laid out in a chart for me to see. Just like I can get now at a BC/BS site. Just like you can get from any online marketplace.
No such luck. NO INFORMATION ABOUT PLANS IS AVAILABLE.
You must first register for an account and begin the lengthy, cumbersome enrollment process...before you have any idea what you're enrolling for!
Well, OK then. I'll try to sign up for an account and enroll.
Next problem: don't try this with Firefox! I've begun to use Firefox for almost all browsing: this site - Daily Kos - for example, simply will not load at any acceptable speed with IE.
With Firefox, I got garbled screens at Healthcare.gov, and eventually it just wouldn't accept any input.
OK, then. "Shut that whole thing down" and open Internet Explorer.
OK, then. This is better!
Next problem: almost right from the start, the site was already asking for too much personal information. Remember, it's forcing me to register before I can see what I can buy. Seriously, the extent of the data mining is enough to play right into the hands of any Teabagger, Fox "News" viewer, Limbot, or other paranoid anti-gummint type. But I want to see this stuff, and they're gonna need this information from me anyway, so I go ahead.
After entering more personal information than I've entered on the average mortgage application, there comes the ID verification. This is sort of like the glove on that creepy Uncle Sam in the Koch videos. It asks me weird questions about previous addresses, previous phone numbers, even a cell phone number (I'd never entered anything about a cell phone on the site so far). Granted, most of these questions are pretty much the same questions you're asked when getting an online credit report, but it was creepy. Why did they have this information about me anyway? Had they already accessed my complete credit report, where that sort of information resides?
OK, then. Except I somehow failed the ID verification.
Not to worry, I can still proceed with the application. So it says.
Remember, I've been at this for half an hour now, and I still have no fucking idea what sort of insurance plans are available to me and whether or not I should bother.
OK, then. The next part is routine stuff, including stuff I've already entered. So I enter it again. Then come the questions about income. No problem...it asks whether my 2014 income will be the same as my 2011 income. I tell it "NO". It then asks me what I think my 2014 income will be. I think it will be higher, and I don't want to have them base my subsidy on a lower income because I'd owe some of it back, so I enter my estimated 2014 amount.
OK, then. Time to "review" before "submitting".
Hmmmmmm...at the end, it says "2014 income will be the same as 2011 income".
NO NO NO NO NO!!!!!
Edit..., the edit screen shows the new income in the little box. Hit "Save and Continue"..."2014 income will be the same as 2011 income". Dammit! Edit again...this time I cleared the box and re-entered.
"2014 income will be the same as 2011 income".
Fuck it. I hit "Submit" anyway, just so I can see what I came for: the plans available to me ant their cost! I'll worry about the subsidy amount later.
OK, then. Waitwaitwaitwaitwait...
"your application cannot be processed until your identity has been verified. Call 1-800-318-2596".
I did that. I knew that doing so would just piss me off more, but I did it. Of course, I was on hold for about 45 minutes, all the while writing this diary.
Eventually a very nice young lady came on, verified my phone number and address (I gave her no other information!) and she then told me that she had my application on her screen (that tracking ability alone will make the paranoids say "I told you so" and go out and buy another gun or five) and that the problems were not my problems, they were system problems. Lots of people signed on. I guess they never expected lots of people to sign on, did they. Shit.
I give up. "You can try calling us again later", says the very nice, very helpful young lady. "You could even try calling tomorrow. You have until December 15.".
Congrats to this Kossack for being honest. There may be hope. (Oddly, or not, if you read the whole post, you'll see that the guy has no concept there could be a critique of ObamaCare from the left.) But here is key point, the nut graf, the bottom line, the takeaway. Here is the last step before the #FAIL:
"2014 income will be the same as 2011 income".
Fuck it. I hit "Submit" anyway,
As Corrente readers know, this is:
1. The insane demand that you project your 2014 income to apply for coverage, and
2. The insane system architecture, which must know your income, in order to fire up the income eligibility engine, a Rube Goldberg device that will throw you into the proper coverage bucket, or not, depending on what you you say your income is. Needless to say, single payer does not have this problem, because its system architecture is simple, rugged, and robust. Everybody in, nobody out!
In other words, after spending an hour fighting through a rotten implementation, the Kos poster discovered why ObamaCare is a rotten product.