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Insurance applications surge at deadline

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Washington’s state health insurance exchange reported a spike in sign-ups ahead of next Monday’s deadline, swelling enrollments for all plans to just over 213,000.

That represents more than a fifth of the state’s 1 million uninsured who can expect to become covered Wednesday. Officials say they expect more to sign up before March 31, which is the next major deadline and one that triggers potential tax penalties for those who don’t have coverage.

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