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Health

'Obamacare' sign-ups top 600,000 in 1st week

| Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017, 11:42 a.m.
The Healthcare.gov website is seen on a computer screen Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2017, in Washington. The government says more than 600,000 people signed up for Affordable Care Act coverage in the first week of open enrollment season, and nearly 8 in 10 of those were current customers renewing their coverage.
The Healthcare.gov website is seen on a computer screen Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2017, in Washington. The government says more than 600,000 people signed up for Affordable Care Act coverage in the first week of open enrollment season, and nearly 8 in 10 of those were current customers renewing their coverage.

WASHINGTON — The government says more than 600,000 people signed up for Affordable Care Act coverage in the first week of open enrollment season, and nearly 8 in 10 of those were current customers renewing their coverage.

About 23 percent were new consumers, according to figures released Thursday by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

The numbers are being closely watched because of the Trump administration's open disdain for the health insurance program enacted under former President Barack Obama.

So far, sign-ups seem to be running about the same pace as last year, despite Trump administration cutbacks in advertising and enrollment assistance for consumers. The numbers cover the period Nov 1-4.

The HealthCare.gov website serving 39 states is running smoothly.

Open enrollment ends much earlier this year, on Dec. 15.

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