Pitts Questions Obamacare Website Contractors

Congressman Joe Pitts (PA-16), Chairman of the Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee, questioned government contractors about why the new Healthcare.gov site is failing today at a full committee hearing. These same companies had previously offered testimony in front of the Health Subcommittee that their systems were ready for launch.

“On September 10, the Health Subcommittee held a hearing at which representatives for four separate government contractors testified,” said Pitts.“Each contractor assured us that its components of Healthcare.gov would be ready on time. And, yet, when the website opened for business on October 1, it was nothing less than an unmitigated disaster.

Testimony from today’s witnesses revealed that companies were concerned about the lack of time given to test the entire system. Thorough testing was not conducted until September 26, just days before the system went live.

The Government Accountability Office estimates the cost of the website and related support centers at $394 million. Healthcare.gov is the main method of purchasing insurance in order to avoid a new government penalty set to go into effect next year.

“Next week, the committee will hear from Health and Human Services Secretary Sebelius,” said Pitts. “Today the contractors made it clear that the department was ultimately responsible for knitting together the pieces they had worked on and for setting the testing schedule. The secretary has a lot of questions to answer about who is responsible for this mess.”

~ New Release via Joseph R. “Joe” Pitts, United States House of
Representatives for Pennsylvania’s 16th Congressional District ~

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