The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on Friday extended the deadline for consumers to enroll on the federal exchanges from Dec. 15 to Dec. 23.

On a call with reporters, Obama administration spokesman Jeff Zients said that despite an even shorter turnaround time for billing and payment, officials believe consumers who sign up as late as Dec. 23 will still be able to have coverage in place on Jan. 1.

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