The open enrollment period to get insurance through Covered California closes at midnight tonight.
Agents like Monica Tracht are feeling the looming deadline. Tracht is a certified insurance agent for Covered California, based in San Francisco. She's spent recent nights fielding calls, at home, even past 10 p.m. At her office, she's booked back-to-back appointments, between which she accommodates walk-ins.
San Francisco insurance brokers like Tracht are logging extra hours to sign up new enrollees for Covered California in 2018. These enrollment numbers, which surpass last year's numbers, are strong — despite actions by President Trump and Congressional Republicans that have weakened the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
Tracht runs a Covered California "Storefront," a permanent location open to walk-in traffic with Covered California signage. The "Storefront" designation also means her office is prominently listed on the health care exchange website. Tracht says that's how most of her clients find her.
"I'd advertised in a local magazine in Spanish," Tracht said, "A couple people came because of the magazine." But Tracht realized she could save her advertising money, because Covered California was promoting the health care coverage for her. "They're everywhere," she said. "The TV, the radio, the newspapers."