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Trump Administration Extends Health Insurance Deadline 36 Hours After Glitch Reports

The Trump administration announced a 36-hour extension of open enrollment. COURTESY: HEALTHCARE.GOV
The Trump administration announced a 36-hour extension of open enrollment. COURTESY: HEALTHCARE.GOV

The Trump administration is extending open enrollment to buy health insurance through the federal health insurance exchanges.

The new deadline is 3 a.m. eastern time December 18.

Seema Verma, the head of the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, tweeted that more than 500,000 people were able to finish enrollment on Sunday alone. But some consumers were asked to leave a name and number at the call center.

RELATED: Free Health Insurance Awaits 700,000 Uninsured Floridians, Report Says

Verma said the extension was done in an abundance of caution.

Christie DeNave is the spokeswoman for Florida Blue, the largest insurer in Florida. She said regardless of the reason why, the insurance company is excited to have the extra 36 hours of enrollment time.

“We definitely find that there’s a lot of people that wait for the last minute no matter what, so some of them may have let these deadlines slip past them,” DeNave said. “We did experience a heavy rush over the weekend, like we do every year at the end of open enrollment. But we didn’t have any issues with actually getting people signed up. So we were a little surprised to hear that there may have been some problems, perhaps in other areas.”

The average premium under the Affordable Care Act in Florida is about $600 a month for a silver plan, but there are subsidies for people making less than $50,000 per year. That means an individual in Orange County making $27,000 annually would pay about $180 per month after subsidies.

A recent report from Kaiser Family Foundation that found nearly 695,000 Floridians who currently don’t have health insurance could get the cheapest Affordable Care Act plan for free after subsidies.

Copyright 2019 Health News Florida

Health News Florida reporter Abe Aboraya works for WMFE in Orlando. He started writing for newspapers in high school. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe worked as a reporter for the Orlando Business Journal. He comes from a family of health care workers.