One week in, Maryland health exchange results disappointing

So far only 326 have signed up for insurance

Tuesday marks one week of Marylanders being able to sign up for health insurance on Maryland's health exchange and so far, it has not gone as well as state leaders have hoped.

From the day the "Marylandhealthconnection.gov" site went live, 174,023 people have visited, but just 13,532 were able to create an account.

Of those – just 326 people have been able to enroll in a health insurance plan.

The head of the state's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene would not say exactly what went wrong.

"This is not the simplest program to put together. There are a lot of different components. In the end, you really don't know until you have a lot of people using it," Sec. Joshua Sharfstein said.

The concept of "Obamacare" has been criticized by conservatives -- it's at the center of the dispute that's shut down the federal government for the past week.

Sharfstein says even though Maryland's exchange isn't operating anywhere near as well as it needs to, the 174,000 visits show there is a market for affordable health care.

"There is an enormous amount of interest in fact a lot of the problems you're seeing are because there's so much interest," Sharfstein said.

There is time to fix the problems with the site; the earliest coverage will kick in will be January 1 st.

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