- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 4, 2015

DALLAS (AP) - The U.S. Health and Human Services Department reports nearly a million Texans have signed up for federal marketplace health insurance.

HHS Regional Director Marjorie Petty said Wednesday in a media conference call that the numbers should “clear up questions” about the need for the marketplace in Texas, which has the highest uninsured rate in the nation. She declined to disclose the agency’s goals for the state, but the agency has said it hopes to have 9.1 million users nationwide by a Feb. 15 deadline.

Those without health insurance by then face a tax penalty.

Dallas-Fort Worth was the state’s leading metropolitan area with 277,015 enrollees.

Texans who earn too little to qualify for federal marketplace plans but too much to receive Medicaid can file for an exemption from the penalty.

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