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Deadline Looms For Those Who Want Healthcare Under ACA January 1st

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- We are days away from a major deadline for those getting insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- We are days away from a major deadline for those getting insurance under the Affordable Care Act.

If you want your insurance to begin January 1, you have until Monday (Dec. 23) to sign up for health insurance.

But, unlike other health insurance there will be continuous monthly deadlines under the affordable care act. That's in part to make up for website snafu.

Those who want their insurance to start the first of the year and they are working fast to get their applications finished.

"I signed up for the Affordable Care Act after going through a lot of options," says Jo Long.

Insurance customer Jo Long is excited for insurance under the Affordable Care Act to start January 1.

Long says her new plan costs of $50 a month with a $500 deductible.

Long was able to qualify even though her employer offers health insurance.

"If 9.5 percent of your income is actually the insurance cost and what you would pay per year is over that 9.5 percent, you are now eligible for the marketplace," says Long.
 
Long was paying hundreds of dollars a month for insurance.

"I actually got tax credits and the tax credits cover two types of costs for me," says Long. "I wouldn't have paid anything a month."

Mercy Hospital is still helping people navigate the Affordable Care Act website.

Dec. 18, as the deadline looms, more people are seeking out help.

Marie Watson, a Mercy certified application counselor, says the website is operating more smoothly, but there are still some slow periods.

"You can actually tell the improvements are there," says Watson.

Watson says though there is an upcoming deadline, this is not the last chance to get covered under the Affordable Care Act.

"With the Affordable Care Act, you have up to March 31 to enroll through the website," says Watson. "So if you don't make this December 23 deadline you can still enroll it will just make your coverage start the following month."
 
Watson says for many people being insured has been an emotional issue.

"You would be surprised there are a lot of excited people, I've had people that cried because they've been surprised the text credits are going to help them as much as they have," says Watson.

Mercy and Cox have both been assisting people navigating through the process. Cover Missouri, the state resource for the Affordable Care Act,  has a hotline available for help over the phone you can call 1-800-318-2596.

You can also use this link to find a navigator to help you in person here

Through November 30, just more than 4,000 people had signed up for insurance through the portal.
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