Sunday at midnight is the deadline for Kentuckians to sign up through Kentucky’s health care exchange to get coverage for 2015.

The Governor’s office reports more than 150,000 people have signed up for health care coverage since the current enrollment period began November 15.

Those without a plan after February 15th could face a tax penalty when filing this year that could exceed the annual cost of insurance.  

The rate of uninsured Kentuckians has dropped—and the number of people with employer-sponsored coverage continues to rise, according to a new poll released Thursday.

Fifty percent of Kentucky adults are insured through their employer or their spouse’s employer, according to the latest Kentucky Health Issues Poll found.

In 2012, 37 percent of adults had coverage through an employer or a spouse’s employer.

Ja’Nel Johnson |

Jaye Allen is a Kynector, paid by the state to help assist people with health insurance. It’s her job to meet with people face-to-face in order to enroll them in a plan under the Affordable Care Act.

She’s had the job since September, and she estimates she’s helped 400 people select a plan that fits both their needs and their budget.

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A new statewide poll shows public opinion is split on the Affordable Care Act.

The Kentucky Health Issues Poll released Thursday says 41 percent of Kentuckians polled have an unfavorable view of the law. 39 percent had a favorable view, and 20 percent hadn’t made up their minds yet. 

FRANKFORT — In his final State of the Commonwealth address, Gov. Steve Beshear celebrated many of his major policy accomplishments during his tenure and called on lawmakers to continue moving the 2015 session toward job-creation initiatives.

The over-riding theme of Wednesday evening’s address was Beshear’s advocacy for workforce development in Kentucky, and the four ways he says he’s strengthened it: early childhood development, education reform, affordable healthcare, and low taxes.

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According to the Kentucky Health Issues Poll, 77 percent of adults in the state know about the state's online health insurance marketplace. 

But, the survey released this week also indicates only 17 percent of uninsured adults say they have tried to get more information about Kynect. 

If you passively renewed your health insurance plan this enrollment period through Kynect, you may be one of thousands who are missing out on a cost-saving insurance plan.

Carrie Banahan, executive director of Kynect, said about 12,000 qualified Kentucky residents aren’t getting a cost-sharing reduction through the health insurance exchange’s “Silver” plan because they are enrolled in other plans.

“Folks might have just gone to the ‘Platinum’ plan  and said, ‘Yep, that’s the one I want,’ and didn’t look at their other options,” she said.

An important deadline is just days away for Kentuckians needing health insurance. 

Although the second enrollment period on Kentucky’s health care exchange runs until February 15, residents must sign up for coverage by Monday in order to be covered when the new year begins. 

"If you wait until February 15th the soonest your effective date can be is March 1st," explains Kynect Executive Director Carrie Banahan.  "If you're wanting coverage by January 1st, you really need to enroll by Monday, December 15th."

More than 18,000 Kentuckians have been filed applications for private insurance or Medicaid since open enrollment began a month ago.  The first month of last year’s enrollment period resulted in 32,000 applications. 

"Keep in mind that last year we enrolled more than 400,000 people," adds Banahan.  "There was a lot of pent up demand among people who didn't have insurance coverage, and now a lot of folks do."

Most of the uninsured have gained coverage through an expansion of Medicaid. 

According to one poll, Kentucky's uninsured rate fell from 20.4 percent in 2013 to 11.9 in 2014.

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Gov. Steve Beshear says the first week of kynect’s latest open enrollment period is “going strong.”

The governor’s office reports that the health exchange’s website received 72,000 visits in the last week with more than 6,400 new applications submitted and 4,100 Kentuckians newly enrolled.