LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Kentucky's online marketplace for health insurance coverage has run into glitches due to the heavy volume of consumers on the opening day of enrollment.
State officials say by mid-morning Tuesday, more than 20,000 people browsed the website and more than 1,000 people signed up for coverage that begins Jan. 1.
They say the heavy volume temporarily shut down the online application process, but computer specialists are working to fix the problems.
Similar problems occurred in other states.
Dominique Williams of Louisville wasn't able to sign up for coverage but set up an appointment to finish her application.
Williams is uninsured and relies on prayer and home remedies to deal with ailments.
Gov. Steve Beshear says some 640,000 Kentuckians are uninsured. Kentucky ranks at or near the top nationally for a series of health problems.
Late Tuesday afternoon, Gov. Beshear tweeted that within the first 15 hours of operation, nearly 60,000 people visited the KYNECT website.
Enrollment in plans through the online Kentucky Health Benefit Exchange begins Tuesday. An estimated 640,000 uninsured residents are eligible for new coverage through Medicaid or the exchange.
The exchange's open enrollment period runs through the end of the year. Policies go into effect Jan. 1.
Premiums range from less than $50 a month for a healthy single person to more than $700 a month for a family of four.
Gov. Steve Beshear has pressed to implement the federal health care reforms for his state. He points out that Kentucky ranks among the worst in the nation in nearly every measure of health.