Skip to comments.Healthcare.gov may be a 'black swan'
Posted on 10/25/2013 3:43:13 PM PDT by Ramius
One in six IT projects face out of control costs, and bring much disruption, making them 'black swans'
WASHINGTON - Despite partisan sniping over the Affordable Care Act, members of a U.S. House committee probing the problems at Healthcare.gov Thursday asked some tough, IT-specific questions that revealed some key facts.
Two members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, U.S. Reps. Greg Walden (R-Ore.) and Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), were especially focused on the testing process for the ACA website that's had problems since its launch on Oct. 1.
It turns out that project's 55 contractors had only two weeks to conduct end-to-end testing of Healthcare.gov prior to launch.
"What's the recommended industry standard for end-to-end testing," asked Walden.
"Months would be nice," said Andrew Slavitt, executive vice president of Optum, one of the contractors that built the site. Cheryl Campbell, senior vice president of CGI Federal and a witness, perhaps the largest contractor on the project, agreed with Slavitt.
The contractors for the site all said they performed their part of the project as required while making it clear that they weren't responsible for the overall outcome of Healthcare.gov.
None could say, with any certainty, when the website will perform as designed. There was no one from the federal government to explain the project's IT decision-making, though federal officials are expected to testify as early as next week.
The problems at Healthcare.gov may qualify as a black swan event, something that's difficult to predict and is disruptive. A black swan event in Mother Nature might include a solar geomagnetic storm that knocks out sensitive electronics and power grids. In IT, a black swan event is a project with out-of-control costs, and consequences so severe that it may cause a company to fail.
(Excerpt) Read more at computerworld.com ...
The comments are interesting. It lasts a whole six or seven posts before it devolves into partisan bickering.
Yep. Make it work on index cards first. If an analog system can’t be made to work... The digital version will just find failure quicker.
But narcissists believe that anything that came before them is inferior and something they build from scratch will be so much better, because they did it.
It was suggested on another thread that this might have been a “death march” project. I had never heard the term, but once I realized what it was, I realized that I had worked on one of them.
Why on earth would they need to make their own website to duplicate the sale of insurance by private insurers to the public? Can't you get your ‘ObamaCare’ compliant policy directly from the insurer and save yourself weeks of headache?
Oh yes. I’m intimately familiar with the “Death March” concept. I was an IT Director in a former life. This was absolutely one of those. It never had a chance of working... from the very first project meeting onward.
I think you can only get a subsidy if you go through the exchange.
I have been through a few myself.
They all end the same way.
At what stage is ObamaCare?
The Six Phases Of Big Projects
- Panic and hysteria
- Search for the guilty
- Punishment of the innocent
- Praise and honor for the nonparticipants
I work at a major hospital and use CMS and Medicaid systems. I love Medicaid system, pretty slick. CMS is behind on modern times like sending our official letters, payment notices, audit and Cost Reporting letters, etc via snail mail. Medicaid on the other hand, sends all communications via secure file transfer and we an send our files to them, etc.
I wondered why they didn’t use an already built government system for the healthcare.gov website.
But hey, I am sure those programmers know what they are doing, after all they got a 600M contract to build it...so the sheeple would come...snark.
Or maybe they could have Amazon sell insurance (sarcasm)
Lanny Davis was Hannity yesterday. Even he said this should have been built around existing private sector insurers and providers.
BUT that this administration does not trust the private sector.
There were a lot of ways around government takeover of 19% of the economy but they wanted to rid it of the private sector. Thereby eliminating competition which would have driven costs down.
I think dead duck might be the better analogy
Does he look like Alfred e Neumann from the back?
Contractors describing the web site
"What? Me worry?" :-)