Obama to meet with tech execs over glitchy HealthCare.gov

As the deadline for signing up for the Affordable Care Act nears, the White House asks advice from CEOs and other executives from Apple, Twitter, Google, Facebook, and more.

CBSNews

Aiming to help solve some of the Affordable Care Act's Web site woes, it appears the White House will be hosting a meeting of the minds on Tuesday.

President Barack Obama will meet with executives from some of the country's top tech companies, including Apple CEO Tim Cook, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt, and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, according to CNN. In all, Obama is said to be meeting with at least 15 tech executives.

The goal of the meeting is to discuss how to improve HealthCare.gov's overall operation. Bugs and glitches have plagued this Web site, where US residents can buy health insurance, since its October launch. Problems have included site crashes, down time, erroneous data, and possible privacy violations.

This isn't the first time the Obama administration has asked the tech sector for help on the matter. In October, the government said it pulled in IT people from around the country to fix the site's problems and also reportedly spoke to Google, Oracle, and Red Hat about the glitches.

At the beginning of this month, the Obama administration announced that it repaired hundreds of software bugs and made hardware upgrades to improve the health insurance marketplace. As a result of the overhaul, the site's uptime is said to be more than 90 percent and its error rate is below 1 percent, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services. However, the agency also said that "there is more work to be done to continue to improve and enhance the Web site" in the coming weeks.

HealthCare.gov is scheduled to close its doors for registration on December 23 to meet the deadline for 2014 enrollment.

In addition to HealthCare.gov, the executives are also expected to discuss the National Security Agency's surveillance programs leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. Over the past few months, a handful of the top tech companies -- including Google, Apple, Microsoft, Yahoo, Facebook, and AOL -- have banded together to demand transparency, oversight, accountability, and reform of the NSA's spying programs.

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About the author

Dara Kerr, a freelance journalist based in the Bay Area, is fascinated by robots, supercomputers and Internet memes. When not writing about technology and modernity, she likes to travel to far-off countries.

 

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