Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius addresses the media at the Wesley Community and Health Center in Phoenix on Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013.
(Photo: David Wallace, The Arizona Republic)
PHOENIX (The Arizona Republic) -- As a congressional panel probed her agency's oversight of the federal health care website, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Thursday during a visit to Arizona that a team of government and private-sector technology experts are working around the clock to fix the problem-filled website.
Following a tour of a Phoenix call center that handles enrollment and a community health center, Sebelius acknowledged that the website, Healthcare.gov, has not operated as seamlessly as she had hoped when it launched Oct. 1.
"Fixes are in place each and every day," Sebelius told reporters after touring the Wesley Community Center in South Phoenix. "We are working very hard to make sure the process is seamless and we won't stop until it is, until everyone who wants to apply on the website goes through."
Sebelius' visit to Phoenix came as a congressional panel in Washington, D.C., probed computer experts about the website's struggles and one congressman threatened to subpoena Sebelius to force her to testify about Healthcare.gov's problems.
Although technical problems dogged the website even before its official launch, Sebelius said that no one has lost their job over it. She said a combination of technical problems and a huge demand from users in 36 states are to blame for the connection problems.
She added that consumers who want to sign up for coverage have other options such as calling the marketplace's toll-free number or sitting down with a navigator to fill out paperwork to enroll.
When asked about calls for her resignation, Sebelius said that she does not work for those who have suggested she resign. She said she is in regular communication with President Barack Obama about her staff's efforts to improve the website.
"I have regular conversations with the president and I have committed to him that my role is to get the program up and running," Sebelius said.