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Obamacare Rollout Marked by Technical Glitches

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Millions of Americans encountered technical glitches Wednesday as they went online to shop for health insurance on the first day of open enrollment under the Affordable Care Act.

filephoto St. Vincent Medical Center Westlake Saint Hospital Emergency Room

St. Vincent Medical Center in Westlake appears in a 2013 file photo.

Several health insurance exchange websites crashed because their servers could not handle the volume of visitors.

Some users reported that the online application process lasted six hours. Online enrollees are required to have an email address.

Some 2.8 million people visited the website on Tuesday, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. 81,000 dialed into call centers, and 60,000 requested live chats.

The California website was taken offline for maintenance after visitors encountered a number of problems. The site was expected to be back online sometime Monday morning.

The site received 5 million hits, officials said. 17,000 people reportedly called the phone number associated with the site: (800) 300-1506.

Consumers were warned to be on the lookout for scams related to the new law.

“A person will call you and say, Mr. Smith I need you to give me so and so dollars to give you advice on how to sign up for Obamcare,” said Kevin Richards of KNR Consulting Group. “If anybody calls out to you, says they’re a navigator or other special terms, it is not true.”

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