Cleaning Out the In Box 5: Idaho exchange porting QHP enrollees themselves; CA making progress on Medicaid backlog; ESI rates not going up that much either
I've been too busy with my day job (I do have one, you know...) to post much lately, but plenty of ACA-related news has piled up, so I'm clearing off my desk with some quick hits:
Idaho officials say they’re tired of waiting on files from the federal government and have figured out a way to transfer the state’s 76,000 Obamacare customers from the federal marketplace to its state-run portal this fall.
Your Health Idaho said it had hoped to leverage federal information to set up existing enrollees on their own web platform.
Instead, it has asked the state’s health and welfare agency to use its eligibility system to figure out who is eligible for government subsidies under the Affordable Care Act. It will also work with insurance carriers to determine who signed up for coverage and needs an account on the state exchange, which is set to launch in time for the overhaul’s second sign-up period on Nov. 15.
Remember that massive backlog of 900K Medicaid applications from May, which was reduced to 600K by the beginning of July? It's now down to "only" 490K people...
California is coming face to face with the reality of one of its biggest Obamacare successes: the explosion in Medi-Cal enrollment.
The numbers — 2.2 million enrollees since January — surprised health care experts and created unforeseen challenges for state officials. Altogether, there are now about 11 million Medi-Cal beneficiaries, constituting nearly 30 percent of the state's population.
...Another problem rests with the state bureaucracy. California has an application backlog of about 490,000 people, which underscores the need to modernize and streamline the technology used for enrollment. The state is making progress in reducing the number of people waiting, but consumer advocates recently asked the federal government for help.
The opening line itself is rather disingenuous, since private market insurance premiums were already going up 10-11% per year on average before the ACA was even enacted, but whatever:
If you’re worried about Obamacare premiums rising an average 8% throughout the U.S. next year, consider that large employers expect to see increases in health benefit costs next year of about 6.5%.
...The group talked to 136 large U.S. companies — most of them with at least 10,000 employees — during the month of June. Nearly three-fourths of all companies said they were taking measures to get employees to be better health-care consumers. More than half are starting or expanding consumer-directed plans, and the majority will add or expand wellness programs.