Over 476,000 apply for health insurance coverage in the US

health insurance enrollment
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Administration releases information concerning health insurance applications

The Obama Administration has released information concerning enrollment in health insurance exchange initiatives throughout the country. These exchanges were opened to the public on October 1, but many were plagued by severe technical difficulties that prevented people from applying for health insurance coverage. Over the past two weeks, states have been working to rectify the problems with their health insurance exchange sites and many have managed to resolve the glitches that had prevented consumers from using the sites effectively.

Consumers flock to exchanges

According to federal officials, n=over 476,000 people have applied for health insurance coverage through state-based exchanges. The majority of applications come from Kentucky, a state that has been one of the most outspoken opponents of the Affordable Care Act in past years. Notably, the figures only show how many people have applied for coverage and now how many people have actually been enrolled in the exchanges themselves.

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health insurance enrollmentExchange issues cause worry for some

Consumers have until January 1, 2014, to purchase health insurance coverage. While federal law makes coverage mandatory beginning on that date, those without insurance coverage will not face any penalties until after March 31, 2014, when the open enrollment period for state-based exchanges comes to a close. A turbulent start to the operation of these exchanges has been harshly criticized and many had suggested that consumers would not be able to obtain health insurance coverage in the time allotted to them by the federal government.

Exchanges prove popular despite initial problems

Despite initial troubles, state-based health insurance exchanges have managed to help expose more people to the benefits they may be eligible for through the Affordable Care Act. While relatively few people have actually obtained insurance coverage through exchanges, millions have accessed exchange sites to find out more information concerning the coverage they have access to. Moreover, many consumers have been utilizing the services offered by health insurance navigators, many of whom are working to educate consumers on the aspects of federal law that have gone largely unnoticed.

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