October 28, 2014

Last year’s rollout of Healthcare.gov was not what you’d call a “smooth process.” Technological snafus, high costs, and the concurrent government shutdown marred the reputation of the health insurance exchange website, the public face of the Affordable Care Act.

But was the rollout really the disaster that many claimed?

Harper Reed – hirsute tech engineer, former CTO for Obama’s re-election campaign, and founder and CEO of Modest – thinks the website and its architects deserve more credit than they’ve received.

“I think it was actually as good as it could be,” Reed says of Healthcare.gov. “If you look at how late they were, they were a month late.  There are very few successful technology teams in the world that could go with those properties and be successful.”

But that’s not to say the site didn’t have its fair share of problems, according to Reed, including outsized costs and a dearth of adequate leadership.

“So I guess the question then is, how do they get past that finish line?” asks Reed. “And how do they do it regularly, so we don’t always have to parachute in a firefighting force to put [out] those fires? How do we just make it so the default is, it always works?"

Listen to our full interview with Harper Reed here.

government, healthcare, Sci and Tech, politics, Harper Reed

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