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Rhode Island exchange signs 2,000

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — More individuals and small businesses in Rhode Island have signed up for Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) exchange plans than expected, the head of the new state-run marketplace said Wednesday.

At a state Senate briefing, Director Christine Ferguson said about 2,000 people have signed up through HealthSource RI during its first two weeks of open enrollment. The number of enrollees includes those who have paid and those who have payments pending.

About 7,000 accounts have been created, Ferguson said. There have been 9,000 calls to the Providence-based customer service center, 550 walk-ins and about 53,000 unique website visits.

Ferguson has not publicly released enrollment targets for Jan. 1.

About 120,000 of Rhode Island’s 1 million residents are uninsured. HealthSource RI managers have estimated that 70,000 to 100,000 people may get coverage through the exchange by the end of 2014.

Ferguson told senators the launch in Rhode Island has been relatively smooth. On the first day, visitors overwhelmed the site, causing temporary access problems for some. But the problem was quickly corrected.

“We’ve had relatively few glitches compared to other parts of the country,” she said.

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