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Insurers predict spike in health exchange use
Albany, N.Y. (AP) - Two start-up insurers in the New York health exchange, one promising unlimited telemedicine, say customer queries have been rising rapidly and they expect enrollment spikes by the new Dec. 23 deadline for coverage next year.
The state reports 27,000 more approved applications over the past week, bringing the total to 284,440. About one-third have enrolled in plans, 50,119 with the 16 commercial and nonprofit insurers and 40,984 in Medicaid.
At Oscar Health Insurance, co-founder Kevin Nazemi says hundreds of thousands of people have contacted their website since Oct. 1, volume increases daily and they expect enrollment spikes later this month and at the end of March.
At nonprofit Health Republic Insurance, chief executive Debra Friedman says phone volume rose 27 percent in one week. She predicts "rapid" enrollment expansion over the next two weeks.