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You have one more day to sign up for health care in WA special enrollment period

A special enrollment period for health insurance during the coronavirus pandemic is about to end in Washington.

The deadline to sign up for a plan through the state’s health benefit exchange is Friday.

Michael Marchand, chief marketing officer for the exchange, says the special enrollment period first opened in March following the governor’s emergency declaration. It was extended in April.

“Because we knew that people who didn’t have insurance were unlikely to seek testing or health services if they fell ill,” Marchand said, “and that result would be bad, not just for the individual, but for their households and also for the state and community at large.”

The special enrollment period is for anyone who does not have health coverage right now.

It’s an opportunity to get health coverage if you’re uninsured. Insurance companies providing coverage through the exchange also have agreed to cover costs related to testing and treating COVID-19.

More than 19,500 people have signed up through the exchange since the special enrollment period was announced. But even after it ends, people who lose their jobs or have another so-called “qualifying event” can still sign up. Open enrollment starts again in November. Though the state’s Medicaid plan is available year-round.

You can sign up for coverage at

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Kirsten Kendrick hosts Morning Edition on KNKX and the sports interview series "Going Deep," talking with folks tied to sports in our region about what drives them — as professionals and people.
A Seattle native and former KNKX intern, Simone Alicea spent four years as a producer and reporter at KNKX. She earned her Bachelor's of Journalism from Northwestern University and covered breaking news for the Chicago Sun-Times. During her undergraduate career, she spent time in Cape Town, South Africa, covering metro news for the Cape Times.