Some 430 California small businesses registered for the new Small Business Health Options Program between Oct. 1 to early Oct. 8, according to Covered California.

Numbers for San Diego County were not immediately available.

Covered California is the state’s marketplace for health insurance under the federal Affordable Care Act, known in some circles as Obamacare.

According to Covered California, small businesses will be able to purchase competitively priced health insurance plans and offer their employees the ability to choose from an array of plans and may qualify for federal tax credits.

Covered California also reported that it received 59,000 calls between Oct. 1 and 5, with an average wait time of 15 minutes. The marketplace said it took in 43,616 applications and determined that 28,699 individuals were eligible for coverage.

October 1 was the first day consumers could apply for health insurance under the federal act.

Covered California said its website received almost 1 million visitors between Oct. 1 and 5.

— SDBJ Staff Report