The Obama Administration Is Looking for the Next Obamacare Website Contractor

The bid is probably not going to CGI Federal.

MIAMI, FL - DECEMBER 23: Obed Suarez waits for the HealthCare. gov website as it reads, ' has a lot of visitors right now!' as he attepts to see what options would be available to him under the Affordable Care Act at a Miami Enrollment Assistance Center on December 23, 2013 in Miami, Florida. People have until today to enroll for a plan that would start January 1st.
National Journal
Dustin Volz
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Dustin Volz
July 16, 2014, 2:27 p.m.

The White House has be­gun its search for the next stew­ards of Health­

A con­tract so­li­cit­a­tion pos­ted on­line Wed­nes­day enu­mer­ates the qual­i­fic­a­tions and re­quire­ments of the next Obama­care web­site con­tract­or, charged with keep­ing the on­line fed­er­al health in­sur­ance ex­change portal up and run­ning.

The 60-page job post­ing says the next care­taker of the Obama­care site will need to be able to work “un­der ag­gress­ive time con­straints” to work with the Fed­er­ally Fa­cil­it­ated Mar­ket­place in test­ing and up­grad­ing a vari­ety of hard­ware, soft­ware, and se­cur­ity fea­tures. It also states that the con­tract­or will need to be able to per­form tests that can demon­strate that the site can func­tion when a large num­ber of users are on­line.

Ac­cen­ture cur­rently holds a one-year con­tract to run Health­, which was awar­ded after a no-bid pro­cess back in Janu­ary. That came after the White House chose to ter­min­ate CGI Fed­er­al’s con­tract fol­low­ing Health­’s failed launch in Oc­to­ber of last year. The web­site’s rol­lout was so plagued with prob­lems that for a time it ap­peared the tech­nic­al dif­fi­culties could severely un­der­mine the im­ple­ment­a­tion of Pres­id­ent Obama’s sig­na­ture le­gis­lat­ive achieve­ment.

The in­tense scru­tiny that fol­lowed led many to call on the gov­ern­ment to fix the way it pro­cures fed­er­al IT con­tracts, a prob­lem that Obama him­self said needed to be ad­dressed. Le­gis­la­tion on the is­sue has stalled in Con­gress.

Noth­ing in the so­li­cit­a­tion ap­pears to pre­clude Ac­cen­ture from com­pet­ing for the new con­tract, but it’s a safe bet that CGI won’t be in the run­ning. Ap­plic­a­tions are due by Aug. 18.

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