Insurance coverage begins Jan. 1, 2014, at the Covered California exchange, but the effort to sign people up for that coverage launches three months before that, on Oct. 1. It’s a little like putting on Thanksgiving dinner … on a really large scale. There are dozens of dishes, each one complex and difficult. Some dishes take less time, some take more, some are bigger and some are smaller — but they all have to hit the table hot at the same time. ”The important date is Jan. 1, that’s what everyone focuses on, when everything starts,” Covered California Executive Director Peter Lee said at a recent board meeting. “But for us, our real window is up until Dec 15.” That’s the last day Californians can enroll and still be covered come Jan. 1. Moving backward from there, the date on which everyone at the exchange is currently focused is Oct. 1 according to a recent story in California Healthline.