obamacare, ACA, enrollment, insurance, coverage

By Chris Eidson

Published 03/27 2014 09:34PM

Updated 03/27 2014 11:42PM

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- President Obama announced a milestone for the Affordable Care Act when the program hit the enrollment goal of six million people on Thursday.

But for those who've waited to sign up for coverage, an expensive deadline looms.

"Whether we like it or not, it's here," Mercy Hospital Financial Counselor Susan Green said.

If you don't start enrollment by March 31, you have to wait until the next open enrollment in November.

That means a penalty on next year's taxes.

"Everyone that's eligible will be responsible for that or pay $95 per person or up to one percent of their income," Green said.

Thursday the president announced an extension until April 15 for those who have begun, but not completed enrollment.

Users are finding technical delays impeding their ability to enroll.

"Because so many people have waited, it's taking about an hour and a half and some are even having to call in to complete it," Green said.

From her perspective, the sooner you start enrollment, the better.

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