Monday's deadline for obtaining coverage by Jan. 1 is big test for revamped HealthCare.gov

Government And Institutions Associated Press

President Barack Obama's health insurance program faces another big test Monday.

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This time it's more than just getting the website to work.

Monday is the deadline for new customers to pick a health plan that will take effect Jan. 1.

For current customers, it's the deadline to make changes that could reduce expected premium increase ahead of the new year.

The deadline is midnight Monday, Pacific time. That gives consumers in the East an extra three hours.

HealthCare.gov is expecting heavy traffic, and telephone hold times at the federal call center already have started creeping up.

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The issue is not so much technology this time but how well the program works for the millions of consumers who are counting on it.

Open enrollment runs through Feb. 15.