Zients Looped In to Oversee Health Care Website Fixes

Jeffrey Zients, former chief U.S. performance officer Jeffrey Zients, former chief U.S. performance officer J. Scott Applewhite/AP

The White House on Tuesday confirmed reports that it had dispatched Jeffrey Zients, the former chief U.S. performance officer now directing the National Economic Council, to coordinate the politically sensitive rescue effort of the shaky health insurance exchange website.

The Healthcare.gov site, which has been plagued by software flaws and unexpectedly high traffic since its Oct. 1 launch by the Health and Human Services Department’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, is now being revamped round-the-clock by a team of private and public-sector information technology specialists.

President Obama weighed in on Monday with his own criticism of the site, and Republican lawmakers continued their scathing attacks on the 2010 Affordable Care Act, with a hearing planned for Thursday at the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

Zients, a longtime business strategist, also served as acting budget director to Obama before the confirmation of Sylvia Mathews Burwell in April.

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