CHARLESTON, W.Va. — According to numbers from healthcare.gov, West Virginia is the only state that has not seen an increase in Affordable Care Act enrollment over the last year.

As of Nov. 25, there were 7,828 enrollments from West Virginians who signed up for a Marketplace plan. Last year, that number was 7,876 — which is a 0.6 percent decline.

Jeremy Smith, outreach coordinator for WV NaviCare, said he’s concerned West Virginians are confused if the ACA is still in place. He said the insurance remains the same.

“We’re reassuring people that nothing has really changed for the 2018 Marketplace plan,” he said. “We all need to make sure that we’re getting the word out that people can still enroll.”

This year, the enrollment period is shorter. Typically enrollment lasts through January. The deadline to enroll this year is Dec. 15.

“We’re concerned because a lot of folks are used to putting it off and we’re a little concerned they may wait too long because they don’t know of the new deadline,” Smith said.

“If you miss the deadline of Dec. 15, the only way that you can enroll after that is if you have a special enrollment period and that’s when you lose your coverage through a job or Medicaid.”

With just two weeks left in the enrollment period, Smith said they’ve been “extremely busy” answering questions from people who call their office.

“We’ve had a little over 1,000 interactions with folks in West Virginia if they have questions about their health insurance plans. We’ve done right at 300 enrollments through the Marketplace so far,” he said.

Those certified health insurance navigators are available through the WV NaviCare helpline at 1-844-WV-CARES or 304-356-5834. The WV NaviCare website is wvnavicare.com.

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