After first being available on November 2, thousands of Montanans have signed up for the Montana HELP Act, which expands Medicaid in the state. Montana DPHHS Intergovernmental Relations Officer Jessica Rhoades has details.

"Roughly fifty five hundred Montanans have already signed up for the Montana HELP plan that will send health care to thousands of Montana residents who have been previously denied coverage in the past," said Rhoades. "That's an extremely strong showing, it shows how important this plan is for Montanan's and we're thrilled that the support has been so strong."

Rhoades said that Montana has goals for the next few months and that the state hopes to have five times the current number of enrollees before the end of the year.

"In the fiscal month, Montana estimated that up to 25,000 people could sign up in the first year. 70,000 is the number that are total eligible and people sign up over time," said Rhoades. "In the first year we estimate that up to twenty-five thousand can sign up, after four years, the estimate is at forty-five thousand people can sign up and so on."

Coverage for those under the HELP Act will begin in January 2016, unlike Medicare, there is no open enrollment period for Medicaid.