Augusta, GA -
The deadline to sign up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act is Monday at midnight.
The Obama Administration set a goal of 7 million people signed up by today. Estimates are that number will be closer to 6.5 million.
People have been flooding the government site all day, and even this morning, last-minute users were having problems signing up. For those who don’t have health insurance, they must sign up or pay a fee of $95 or one percent of their income. While many are already covered through employers or their family, some are facing a choice they can’t make.
The clock is ticking to sign up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, and Augusta resident Nick Roberson is feeling the pressure.
“I saw on Facebook last night that we had one more day to apply for the health care plans or receive some type of penalty, so I went on the website and I researched according to my situation, my family situation, and the plans seems so unaffordable to me,” said Roberson.
Unaffordable is a mutual feeling between others about the health insurance plans.
“It’s just not affordable for those of us on low-income, and they are demanding that we do this and we can’t afford it, I can’t even afford a home right now,” said Joy Kiesling.
Even those who are covered don’t think people should have to make a decision.
“It’s good for people to have healthcare, but it’s bad to force people to have it if they don’t want it,” said Fred Swindell.
Ron Skenes at Christ Community Health Services is helping people sign up for a plan before it’s too late, but many people he works with don’t even qualify.
“Because the State of Georgia did not expand its Medicaid Program, a number of people are falling into a gap where they are not eligible for any of the credits or any of the rebates, so they are basically still going to be uninsured even after the deadline passes,” said Skenes.
For those who have started the enrollment process today, they will have some leeway to finish signing up. Users can request an extension when applying, and will be granted a grace period.