WASHINGTON

- President Obama's push to cover America's uninsured faces another big test today.

This time, it's not only how the website functions, but how well the program itself works for millions who are starting to count on it.

Midnight tonight is the deadline for new customers to pick a health plan that will take effect on Jan. 1, and for current enrollees to make changes that could reduce premium increases ahead of the new year.

HealthCare.gov and state insurance websites are preparing for heavy online traffic before the deadline, which gives consumers in the East three hours into Tuesday to enroll.

Wait times at the federal call center started creeping up around the middle of last week, mainly because of a surge of current customers with questions about their coverage for next year. Many will face higher premiums, although they could ease the hit by shopping online for a better deal.

- Associated Press