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Obamacare website to go offline overnight daily for repairs

10:54 PM, Nov 3, 2013   |    comments
Photographer: Ken James/Bloomberg via Getty Images
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The application page of the Obamacare website - stricken with glitches for weeks - will go offline daily while a technology team works to resolve problems, the government said Sunday.

The Health and Human Services Department said that the application page of HealthCare.gov will go offline from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. daily. During those times, people will not be able to apply or enroll through the website.

"Additional down times may be possible as we work to make things better. The rest of the site and the Marketplace call center remain available during these hours," HHS said in a message on its home page.

People still can apply for coverage through the health marketplace call center - 1-800-318-2596. That's available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

HealthCare.gov locked up the day it went live on Oct. 1 and has had glitches ever since, fueling criticism of the Obama's health care insurance program in Congress and elsewhere.

President Barack Obama and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius have apologized  for the website's failures.

The administration has said it's aiming to have HealthCare.gov humming along by the end of November.

A spokesperson for HHS told NBC News that the administration has always been clear that the website could be down during off-peak hours. But this is the first time, that announcement has appeared on the website's homepage.

HHS officials said last week that tech gurus from Google, Oracle and Red Hat have joined the effort to help the beleaguered website.

Kristen Welker and Jeff Black, NBC News

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