MNsure signups reach 11,000 in first month

MNsure call center
In this Sept. 27, 2013 photo, MNsure contact center representatives specialist Carlos Villanueva, left, and guide Emily Joyce work in one many cubicles at the center in St. Paul, Minn.
AP Photo/Jim Mone

Nearly 11,000 people have signed up for health coverage through the online health insurance marketplace since it opened Oct. 1, MNsure officials said today.

Of the 10,940 who are in the process of enrolling in coverage, most will wind up in government plans, either MinnesotaCare or Medical Assistance. About 1,800 are in the process of enrolling in commercial health plans.

Among the 11,000 is Julie Peck, who runs a coffee house in St Paul and is looking forward to having health coverage next year. She said not having insurance since the beginning of the year has been stressful.

"We could lose our home, our business, our everything," Peck said. "It's an awful feeling." MNsure officials expect a steady increase in enrollments as the mid-December deadline approaches for coverage to begin Jan. 1.

But people enrolling in commercial plans don't officially have coverage until MNsure sends their personal data to the insurers and the companies process the information and issue policies.

Because many of the applications for insurance involve more than one person, the 15,000 completed applications represent an estimated 31,447 people to be covered.

An estimated 300,000 uninsured Minnesotans are projected to eventually sign up for insurance.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Editor's note: This report has been revised from the original to remove inaccurate information provided by the AP that confused the number of completed applications and the number of people in the process of enrolling in a health plan.

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