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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Tampa increases Obamacare signups by nearly 50 percent

University of South Florida graduate student Nickolas St. Cyr of Tampa logs into his health insurance marketplace account last month while working with Dr. Avery Rosnick-Slyker from the University of South Florida's Covering Kids & Families' Navigator program. At 26, St. Cyr had aged out of his parents' coverage.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

University of South Florida graduate student Nickolas St. Cyr of Tampa logs into his health insurance marketplace account last month while working with Dr. Avery Rosnick-Slyker from the University of South Florida's Covering Kids & Families' Navigator program. At 26, St. Cyr had aged out of his parents' coverage.

16

February

Nearly 114,000 Tampa residents registered for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act as of the end of January, city officials said Tuesday.

That's 37,000 more than during last year's open enrollment period. To encourage registration, the city opened its recreation center to health care navigators for the third straight year, passed out hundreds of fans printed with enrollment contacts at local churches, ran newspaper ads (paid for by Blue Cross Blue Shield) and did two rounds of robo-calls from Mayor Bob Buckhorn (paid for by another nonprofit).

Tampa's results were good for 11th place in a 20-city "Healthy Communities Challenge" organized by the White House to see which city could sign up the highest percentage of people who lacked coverage. Tampa's enrollment represented about 49 percent of its 231,000 residents who lacked health coverage. Milwaukee won the competition by enrolling fewer people overall, but by signing up a much higher percentage (75 percent) of its uninsured population. That means it gets a visit soon from President Barack Obama. The top five cities also included Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit and Oakland, Calif. In all nearly 13 million people signed up for coverage through Obamacare this year.

"In the end," Buckhorn said, "we all win." 

[Last modified: Wednesday, February 17, 2016 7:39am]

    

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