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Spike in healthcare enrollment

OLYMPIA – More than 200,000 state residents have enrolled in health coverage plans since October, but 10 percent of that number signed up in a span of just four days.

That’s according to Washington Healthplanfinder in a statement issued this week noting that 20,000 new enrollees signed up from Dec. 20 through Dec. 23.

More than 50,000 individuals visited wahealthplanfinder.org on Dec. 23 and 10,000 enrolled in private health plans, the state says.

Overall, about a fourth of the new sign-ups are for qualified health plans requiring payment. The rest of the enrollees are for government-funded Medicaid plans.

In addition, state officials note there are nearly 250,000 healthcare applications that are considered “in process,” meaning they still need to be finalized. Of those, about 70,000 are for qualified, private health insurance plans that still need payment from the applicant.

Though deadlines are winding down – either passed or extended by a few days – to obtain health coverage with a start date of Jan. 1, 2014, those with existing health insurance coverage have until next spring to switch to a health plan if they so wish.

For more information or to enroll in a plan, check out www.wahealthplanfinder.org.

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