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United Way of Lancaster County

Search extends open enrollment deadline to Jan. 19


State officials are giving Pennsylvanians eligible to use an extra four days to sign up for health insurance.

Open enrollment on the portal normally ends Jan. 15, but it is being extended to Friday, Jan. 19, leaders from Pennie, the Department of Human Services and the state Insurance Department said Tuesday.

Pennie is a state’s health insurance marketplace, Pennsylvania’s counterpart to It allows customers who aren’t covered by an employer or public insurance such as Medicaid or Medicare to shop for policies.

Plans are heavily subsidized. Premiums are capped at 8.5% of household income and customers often pay less, some less than $1 a month.

Pennie’s annual open enrollment period runs from the start of November to mid-January, allowing anyone who is eligible to enroll or change plans. The rest of the time, customers can only do so if they have a “qualifying life event,” such as changing jobs or moving.

Plans bought in January take effect Feb. 1.

“This open enrollment period is the best time to explore available options and shop around to find a plan, even if you already have insurance,” said Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Michael Humphreys. “… We encourage consumers to research and compare plans to find coverage that best fits their needs.”