Oregon deserves WAY better than what Cover Oregon has done (or hasn't done)

Carla Axtman

Ultimately, I expect the Affordable Care Act will be a relatively good piece of public policy. It's a far sight better than where we came from. More than that, I really believe that government can play a fundamental role in helping people and in making things better. Oregon has demonstrated time and again that we are innovative, creative and know how to tackle really tough problems.

That's why all this failure behind Cover Oregon is such an epic cluster***k (yes, you have to fill in the blanks. Just do it).

Ann Staver, The Statesman Journal:

Half of the people who met Cover Oregon’s deadline to apply for health care coverage that started Jan. 1 could be without insurance in the new year.

“This is not I think where anyone wanted to be,” said Bruce Goldberg, interim director for Cover Oregon. “It’s where we are, and we are going to work on getting through this to get everybody the coverage that they need.”

Cover Oregon launched Oct. 1 without a fully functioning website. So, Oregonians who wanted insurance had to apply using 19-page paper applications if they wanted to meet the Dec. 15 enrollment deadline for coverage starting Jan. 1. About 65,000 people met that deadline, but Goldberg said Tuesday that only 28,189 of those applications have been processed and 9,949 people have enrolled in a health care plan.

Starting with the fundamental technology failures and moving to the drastic underestimation in time and resources, I hardly know where to start. Especially in an era where so many people already think that government sucks (figuratively and literally--from their wallets), undermining the citizenry's faith in government is exactly what we don't need.

Sure...we should definitely throw Oracle under the bus on this one. It's starting to look more and more like they didn't do what they were being paid to do. But let's be real here: a serious look at our oversight and contracting practices, especially around technology, needs to happen.

Also, next time I want a really juicy soundbite for a newspaper article, I'm totally calling John Cvetko:

John Cvetko, a quality assurance contractor hired by Cover Oregon, backed Jovick's sentiments. Cvetko warned in a November email that implementing meaningful control over Oracle wouldn't be easy.

Cover Oregon "will need assistance riding herd over Oracle," he said. "Oracle has a big ass and it will take many highly skilled boots to consistently kick it."

Gold.

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