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Obamacare enrollment deadline extended by one week

WASHINGTON — Moving to accommodate consumers frustrated by the troubled healthcare.gov website, the Obama administration announced Friday that Americans would have an extra week to sign up for health coverage for 2014.

The president’s healthcare law originally required consumers to select a health plan by Dec. 15 in order to be covered on Jan. 1. Americans will now have until Dec. 23 to select a plan, administration officials said in a conference call for reporters.

The delay should allow all Americans who want to get a health plan to get coverage in time for next year, said Jeff Zients, who is overseeing the White House’s efforts to rescue the disastrous rollout of the Affordable Care Act.

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Zients also said that upgrades to the healthcare.gov website were on track to allow consumers to select a plan, even when enrollment surges as the deadline approaches.

The one-week extension of the enrollment deadline is the latest in a series of changes the administration has made in the schedule for Obamacare. Thursday, officials announced that next fall’s open enrollment period for coverage would start a month later than scheduled — in mid-November rather than mid-October.

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noam.levey@latimes.com

Twitter: @noamlevey

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