MONDAY, Dec. 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Enrollment in Affordable Care Act coverage for next year has surpassed 8 million, a sign that many Americans still turn to the government health insurance program to help pay for their medical care.

Between Nov. 1 and Dec. 17, 8.3 million people enrolled in the program, a 2 percent drop from last year, according to a U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services report issued Friday. More than 2 million enrollees were new customers, an increase of 36,000 from last year. Florida sign-ups topped 1.9 million, according to the report, an increase of more than 100,000 customers. In Texas, about 1.1 million enrolled, nearly 30,000 more than last year.

“For the third straight year in a row, the consumer satisfaction rate at the Call Center remained high — averaging over 90 percent — throughout the entire Open Enrollment period,” according to a CMS news release. “We extended the deadline to sign up for Jan. 1 coverage until 3:00 AM ET on December 18. CMS took this step out of an abundance of caution to accommodate consumers who attempted to enroll in coverage before the deadline and were unable to complete the process.”

But the fate of the program, which provides private health insurance to people without workplace coverage, remains uncertain. Just last week, a federal appeals court declared part of the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional, throwing other key parts of the law into doubt.

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