More Website Woes: HealthCare.Gov Crashes for Hours

Outage occurs as Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is set to face tough questions from Congress

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A crucial component of the Obama Administration’s healthcare website went down on Sunday, the latest glitch in a rollout that has been plagued by technical difficulties.

The federal data services hub, which verifies applicants’ personal information as they apply for benefits under the health care law, experienced an outage on Sunday. A spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Human Services pointed the finger at an outside contractor named Terremark. The outage is being blamed on a network failure. A spokesman for Verizon Enterprise Solutions, Terremark’s parent company, acknowledged the problem and told the AP they were working as quickly as possible to fix it.

This latest glitch comes as Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is set to appear before a Congressional panel Monday. Republicans plan to grill the secretary on the site’s rough rollout — and this crash is just one more for their arsenal.