By Pat Warren

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Marylanders are just hours away from the deadline to enroll in affordable health care. It was a busy weekend for the Maryland Health Connection.

Political reporter Pat Warren reports applications are still pouring in.

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What seemed like a long way off on Oct. 1 is here now.

Ailyn Sweet is working her way through the Affordable Health Care enrollment process.

“I’ve been working on it for about a week and a half, jumping through all the paper hoops,” she said. “I forgot I had gone in a couple of months ago and created the whole password thing so now I had to go back in and try to remember what I had done.”

Now her time for do-it-yourselfing is over.

“It’s easier to come talk to a person at this point,” she said.

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The state is encouraging Marylanders to do whatever it takes to get enrolled by the midnight deadline.

“There are lots of different ways to do it. We have the call center that is open for extended hours until midnight tonight,” said Carolyn Quattrocki.

The call center number is 1-855-642-8572. There’s another number for people who are having trouble on the website.

“It’s a hotline to get registered so that way, they will get a call after today to give them special assistance,” Quattrocki said.

That number is 1-800-396-1961 and again, it’s for anyone experiencing glitches on the website.

Governor Martin O’Malley has compared fixing the glitches to changing a flat on a moving car. The next system that is installed is expected to go a lot smoother.

Failure to enroll by midnight means paying a penalty to the federal government, but it only applies if you have no existing health care coverage.

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