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New York State Health Department fields 40,000 calls a day as Obamacare enrollment deadline approaches

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NEW YORK — The New York State Health Department has been hit with a barrage of phone calls as the final deadline to enroll in a Qualified Health Plan for 2017 coverage approaches.

The Health Department’s customer service center averaged 40,000 calls a day last week, according to Executive Director Donna Frescatore. The final deadline for enrollment is Tuesday, Jan. 31.

“We’ve seen unprecedented volume this open enrollment season,” Frescatore said. “We have answered over 1.7 million calls during open enrollment so far.”

Only people who have a “qualifying life event” will be eligible for 2017 coverage after the Jan. 31 open enrollment deadline.

The NY State of Health Customer Service Center will have extended hours on Jan. 28 – Jan. 29 from 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. to continue to meet the high demand. Enrollment information is available on the Health Department’s website. People can also call 1-855-355-5777 for information.

“Consumers need to do their part and act now to get enrolled,” Frescatore said.