State Obamacare enrollment up 2,000

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This image shows the HealthCare.gov 2017 web site home page. President-elect Donald Trump says he favors eliminating President Obamas Affordable Health Care Act.

AP file photo

This image shows the HealthCare.gov 2017 web site home page. President-elect Donald Trump says he favors eliminating President Obamas Affordable Health Care Act.

Nearly 2,000 more Mississippians have signed up for healthcare coverage under the Affordable Care Act this year compared to the same period last year, according to data released last week by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Since open enrollment began Nov. 1, some 18,500 Mississippians have signed up, the federal agency said. In the same time period last year, only 16,515 Mississippians had enrolled, an increase of nearly 2,000 customers.

This rise is reflected in national numbers, too. As of Nov. 26, 2.1 million Americans had signed up for coverage using the federal exchange, an increase of 97,287 over the first four weeks of enrollment in 2015.

“I hear from people across the country just how much coverage matters to them,” said Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell.

But what this coverage will become under the new administration of President-Elect Donald Trump remains unclear.

Trump rode to victory on promises of a full repeal of the Affordable Care Act. But in recent weeks he has expressed support for certain provisions of the health law, including exceptions that would allow children to stay on their parents’ health plan until age 26 and require insurers to cover those who have pre-existing conditions.

Earlier this week, Trump announced U.S. Rep. Tom Price, R-Georgia, a prominent critic of the Affordable Care Act, as his pick for Health and Human Services Secretary. Price has been at the center of congressional efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act. He has also previously proposed a replacement health care plan that favors age-based tax credits that people could then use to buy private health insurance.

Any changes will not affect coverage for 2017. Interested consumers should enroll in the Affordable Care Act by Dec. 15 for coverage that starts Jan. 1.