Rhode Island’s health insurance exchange reports that more than 9800 Rhode Islanders have signed up for health coverage with private insurance plans to date. And while you might have missed the deadline to get covered as of January 1st, enrollment remains open through March 31st.
A last minute rush to sign up before the December 31st deadline sent many more Rhode Islanders on to HealthSource RI to buy health insurance coverage. Those who made it are covered as of January 1st (as long as they're paid up). Those who didn’t can still enroll through March 31st, with coverage taking effect the month after their first premium payment. Small businesses can sign up whenever their enrollment period begins.
Despite the many deadline extensions, the 9800 newly covered Rhode Islanders is just a fraction of the estimated 125,000 lacking coverage. It remains to be seen whether more of them will seek coverage on the exchange, and whether those newly covered will swamp already busy doctors’ offices.