Deadline approaching for Jan. 1 health coverage

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolinians have until Monday to sign up for health insurance through the federal exchange if they want coverage to start Jan. 1.

The deadline applies to both the uninsured and current customers. The second year of enrollment continues through Feb. 15. But the deadline is important for people who want insurance — or a new plan — to take effect on New Year's Day.

South Carolinians have more choices for 2015. One additional company is selling policies through the exchange. And the state's largest insurer, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, has doubled its offerings and expanded plans' provider network.

On average, premiums in South Carolina have risen less than 1 percent, but the swings in individual policies vary from a 39 percent increase to a 35 percent decrease.

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