Sacramento Bee, Cathy Locke
Covered California officials announced that due to a surge in demand for health insurance through the state marketplace, it has extended the enrollment deadline by two days for coverage that begins Jan. 1.
Officials said the Covered California Service Center will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday.
“The spike in interest we are seeing in the last few days tells us there is continued demand for quality, affordable coverage,” Executive Director Peter V. Lee said in a written statement. “We already have enrolled more consumers this year for Jan. 1 coverage than we did last year.”
Certified enrollers, including agents, have reported that they still are processing thousands of applications and appreciate the additional time to ensure consumers receive coverage for all of 2016, according to a Covered California news release.
Open enrollment runs through Jan. 31, but coverage for consumers who enroll after Dec. 17 will start in either February or March.
Consumers can enroll several ways, including online via the Covered California website. Enrollment locations also can be found by visiting the Covered California website and searching for enrollment by ZIP code. In addition, hundreds of locations, identified with Covered California signs, are available to enroll consumers confidentially and at no cost in a variety of languages. Consumers also can call Covered California directly at 800-300-1506 to enroll over the phone.
Covered California is the state’s marketplace for the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Covered California helps individuals determine whether they are eligible for premium assistance that is available on a sliding-scale basis to reduce insurance costs, or whether they are eligible for low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal.
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