Health exchange enrollments increase

OLYMPIA — State officials say that the number of people signing up for private insurance on the state’s new health exchange have increased significantly since the health exchange went online in October.

According to data released Thursday by the Washington Health Benefit Exchange, enrollments in the private plans increased from 6,351 in October to 20,144 in November. An additional 53,000 people have completed their applications but need to finish enrolling by paying for their new health coverage that is set to begin in January.

Enrollees in Snohomish County make up nearly 10 percent of the state total, with 1,420 receiving tax credits and another 445 not qualifying for a credit. Those signing up for Medicaid total 15,639.

Officials also say that most applications have come from one-person households and that nearly 20 percent of the enrollees buying private plans were in the 18-to-34-year-old category. About 40 percent are between the ages of 55 and 64.

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