Mass. falls short on health insurance sign-ups

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Though it was the first state to create an easy-to-use online health insurance marketplace and served as a model for the Affordable Care Act, Massachusetts now ranks last in its progress toward enrolling people under the federal law.

The failure of the state’s revamped website, run by the Massachusetts Health Connector, has required the state to process most applications on paper or offline, a slow process that has frustrated customers.

By the end of December, three months into the enrollment period, only 5,428 Connector shoppers had succeeded in choosing their preferred health plan, according to a report released this week. That is far short of where the state needs to be to meet a goal of enrolling 250,000 in private health plans by the end of March.

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