START OF 2018 OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD

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Washington State: 6% Private increase; 9% Medicaid "drop" (but not really)

Hat Tip To: 
ArcticStones

Some interesting numbers out of Washington State. While private enrollments are only up 6% over 12/23 (143,383 vs. 135,078; the % paid as of 01/02 has increased from 48% to 52%), the Medicaid numbers are quite different, due to changes in how they're being reported.

Previously, "Newly Eligible" and "Previously Eligible" were lumped in together with "Redeterminations" (ie, people who were already on Medicaid prior to ACA expansion and are simply renewing their accounts). However, WA is the only state (so far) to list "redeterminations" separately, so I've left those out this week. With all the concern and confusion about how many ACA enrollees are "new" to having healthcare coverage, this seems like a wise move. Of course, this also means that the Medicaid total is actually somewhat lower than I had it previously, even with the additional new enrollees since 12/23. 

As a result, the total Medicaid number for WA is now 177,065 vs. the previous 194,398, a "drop" of 17,333. The new number is lower, but more accurate reflection of the actual impact of the ACA on Medicaid...in 1 state. Hopefully other states (and the HHS) will start separating out "redeterminations" going forward as well, if possible.

I should also note that the 47,111 people who were automatically transferred over from the Basic Health and presumptive SSI programs appear to have been absorbed into the general Medicaid number, which is fine.

Officials say that more than 71,000 people have signed up for private insurance since October 1 through Washington state's new health care exchange...

Another 72,178 people will be enrolled after they complete payment. The exchange had a goal of signing up 130,000 people into private insurance plans by Jan. 1...

The total number of people purchasing private insurance and those enrolling in free insurance through Medicaid is now more than 248,000. More than 121,000 of those signing up are newly eligible to the expanded Medicaid.

 

Enrollments Completed
Qualified Health Plans: 71,205
Medicaid Newly Eligible Adults: 121,258
Medicaid Previously Eligible but not Enrolled: 55,807

Medicaid Redeterminations (Previously Covered):156,206

Qualified Health Plan Applicants – Need to Pay: 72,178