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With December 31st approaching...

The state and health insurers are stepping up efforts to enroll uninsured residents before penalties for failure to have coverage begin on January 1st.  The Connector holds the first of ten forums tonight to answer questions about mandatory coverage and help people sign up.  The Greater Boston Interfaith Organization is in the midst of 50 such workshops at schools, churches, synagogues and mosques.  And health insurers plan major ad and direct mail campaigns starting next month.  Blue Cross will keep its call center open until midnight on December 31st for same day enrollment, says spokesman Chris Murphy.

We think that people are gonna take their time to decide what plan works best for them and their families, so we want to just give them as much as we can. 

Residents applying for subsidized insurance won't be able to wait until the last mintue.  They will have to begin the enrollment process by mid-November to avoid the $219 penalty on this year's tax return.

This program aired on October 22, 2007. The audio for this program is not available.

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