National ACA Marketplace Signups Dipped a Modest 3.7 Percent This Year

09 February, 2018, 05:19 | Author: Clint Gray
  • Covered California Sees Slight Drop In Renewals

What would help boost enrollment when sign-ups begin again later this year, according to leaders of state-based exchanges, is additional federal funding for reinsurance. He highlighted that almost 390,000 new consumers signed up for coverage, an increase of 5% over the prior year.

The report combined enrollment figures from the federal exchange, where enrollment ended on December 15, 2017, along with state-based exchanges that allowed customers to select plans as late as January 31.

"For the first time we now have the full national picture of how the individual marketplaces did this year and it is a picture of remarkable stability", said NASHP executive director Trish Riley.

States which have their own marketplaces fared better. But it remained essentially flat in the 12 state-based marketplaces and in the five states that have their own exchanges, but outsource the enrollment process to healthcare.gov.

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The latest open enrollment period was indeed unlike any other saw far in the ACA's history, as it was not only half as long for many states but also taking place after a year in which Congress tried repeatedly to repeal the law that created the individual marketplaces. In the 12 fully state-operated marketplaces, enrollment ticked up just slightly by 0.1 percent, ranging from 6.3 percent drop in Vermont to a 12.1 percent increase in Rhode Island.

"Obamacare is finished. It's dead". That's despite the fact that Trump slashed the program's advertising budget by 90% and shortened open enrollment for coverage this year from three months to only 45 days.

Numerous federal moves were not helpful, said Heather Korbulic, executive director of Nevada Health Link, which is operated by the state but uses the federal Health care.gov website.

An Associated Press count found that nationwide enrollment was about 3 percent lower than a year ago.

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In neighboring Arizona, which also has experienced significant turmoil in its insurance market, enrollment fell 15.6 percent in 2018, one of the largest drop-offs in the country.

They have been buffeted for much of the previous year by uncertainty over their future, with insurers in some areas raising rates steeply or exiting markets altogether. Covered California Director Peter Lee attributed some of that to efforts by the state to encourage off-market purchases by consumers who don't qualify for subsidies.

People who are eligible for health law subsidies would be shielded from such increases, but those who don't get financial assistance would face another round of premium hikes.

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