Pace of enrollment on the state's health exchange ahead of last year

Health exchange enrollment in Maryland ahead of last year.

More than 57,000 people enrolled in health coverage through the state’s online insurance marketplace in the first nine days of 2016 open enrollement, a pace twice that of last year, officials reported.

Close to 11,000 enrolled in private plans, almost 1,000 in dental plans and the remainder in Medicaid.

The exchange is the place, created under the federal Affordable Care Act, where people without employer-provided insurance can get health coverage. Open enrollement on marylandhealthconnection.gov began Nov. 1.

Many of those signing up for Medicaid, who must renew annually in the federal-state health program for the low-income, were moved over from an old state system into the exchange’s online system. About a quarter were new to the program, officials said.

Those in private plans who don’t want to make any changes in coverage from this year can renew “passively,” or without signing up through the exchange.

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