Fascinating article about the technology behind Healthcare.gov

Pretty amazing that the govt is actually placing all the code for healthcare.gov on github for all of us to inspect. There’s only one commit, and it’s 3 months old. Also there’s a reasonable amount of developer information available.

Somehow I suspect that it is not *all* there or how fast it will be updated, but still whatever’s there is a big step forward from the SOP of the past!

Open by design: Why the way the new Healthcare.gov was built matters | E Pluribus Unum:

The people building the new Healthcare.gov are unusual: instead of an obscure sub-contractor in a nameless office park in northern Virginia, a by a multidisciplinary team at HHS worked with Development Seed, a scrappy startup in a garage in the District of Columbia that made its mark in the DC tech scene deploying Drupal, an open source content management system that has become popular in the federal government over the past several years.


0 thoughts on “Fascinating article about the technology behind Healthcare.gov

  1. So, like many things relating to open-source, the government, and healthcare, this is not quite the whole picture.I'm currently working with an independent web broker who is likely to be the very first 3rd party service to integrate with the government healthcare exchanges.This healthcare.gov open source package is really just static HTML, the "marketing" pages for the application. The real picture is that there are a whole slew of other systems behind the scenes, both the official government exchange, plus identity verification services, API checks to medicare and eligibility databases for qualified health plans for low-income residents. And there are some distinctly "legacy" technologies in use for 3rd party integration. Not sure I can go into them, but suffice it to say, it's not like doing a modern Twitter oauth/REST integration at all! Part of that is due to repurposing older systems, and a lot of it is in the name of security (and I speculate re-use of security channels have already been audited because they didn't have time to wait for a whole new audit round for this new site).When the site actually rolled out, while the HTML marketing pages may be "inherently scalable", the other parts of it were not, and the site had a lot of ups-and-downs.I've spoken with the teams helping to run the show, and they are a good group. They know there own systems well and are working nights and weekends to make sure it's a success. But definitely government teams, not quite the panacea of entrepreneur-startup-shop that this article describes. There are still bureaucracies integrating all the various pieces. Things are moving fast though. The documentation is already falling out of sync with the reality, and we're only on day 6 of the rollout! 🙂