Health & Spirit

Obamacare insurance markets open this week amid confusion and uncertainty

Noam N. Levey, Tribune Washington Bureau on

Published in Health & Fitness

"There are still a lot of people who want the coverage," said Jodi Ray, who oversees enrollment efforts for Florida Covering Kids and Families, a nonprofit that has helped Floridians sign up for health insurance since the marketplaces opened four years ago.

Federal officials have said they don't believe such a federal effort is necessary, as the marketplaces are now entering their fifth year.

That's unfortunate, Lee said. California officials concluded that ongoing outreach and advertising is crucial because there is so much turnover in the marketplaces as consumers leave to get coverage elsewhere after getting a job or qualifying for a government plan such as Medicare or Medicaid.

Ever year, about 40 percent of Covered California's enrollees are new, Lee said. "There are always new people to reach."

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