WASHINGTON – The Obama administration has dumped the information technology firm responsible for building the troubled HealthCare.gov website, replacing CGI Federal with Accenture, another multinational IT firm, the administration announced Saturday.
CGI, which has drawn sustained criticism for its work on a centerpiece feature of the president's health law, was effectively demoted last fall, when administration officials turned to a subsidiary of insurance giant UnitedHealth to rescue HealthCare.gov from its disastrous Oct. 1 debut.
"As [the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services] moves forward in our efforts to help consumers access quality, affordable health coverage, we have selected Accenture to become the lead contractor for the HealthCare.gov portal and to prepare for next year’s open enrollment period," the administration said in a statement.
HealthCare.gov is the main website for consumers in 36 states who want to shop for health insurance plans that meet new standards set up by the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare.
Fourteen other states, including California, chose to develop their own marketplaces and websites, most of which performed far better than HealthCare.gov.
An intense effort to repair HealthCare.gov has largely rescued the site. More than a million people have signed up for private health plans since Oct. 1, according to the latest statistics.