START OF 2018 OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD

Time: D H M S

Oregon: 81K QHPs ON exchange, 62.7K OFF-exchange

Updating Oregon's QHP total does nothing to change the overall tally this year because they're operating on HC.gov now. It is useful to keep a running total on the state, however. In addition, Oregon is the only state (so far) providing hard numbers for off-exchange QHP enrollments.

Members enrolled, Nov. 15-Jan. 4

  • On Healthcare.gov 81,037
  • Outside of Healthcare.gov 62,678
  • Total 143,715

About the data: Enrolled means a person has selected a plan. Consumers must pay the first month's premium for their coverage to become effective. These numbers do not identify whether the first month's premium has been paid. These numbers do not include Oregonians enrolled in the Oregon Health Plan (Medicaid).

It's noteworthy that the off-exchange number is starting to catch up with the exchange-based policies. Last year the number of off-exchange QHPs was roughly equal (or even a bit higher) than the exchange-based enrollment total (around 8 million each, although of course only 7.1 million of the exchange enrollees actually paid their first premium and only about 6.7 million were still enrolled by the end of the year...it'd be interesting to find out if the OFF-exchange pattern was similar or not...)

This year I'm expecting the off-exchange total to be somewhat lower than then on the exchanges; since off-exchange enrollees don't receive any sort of tax break, those signing up directly with insurers tend to have a higher income anyway and presumably were already far more likely to be insured anyway. In other words, I'm assuming that the off-exchange number won't end up being much more than 8 million this year (9-10 million, perhaps?) even if the exchange-based number ends up reaching the 12.5M target that I expect.

So far, Oregon is bearing this out: 62,678 is around 77% of 81,037, which would extrapolate out to 9.6 million if it's representative nationally. And remember, OR is one of the states which is not allowing "grandfathered" non-compliant policies to be extended, so every one of those 62.6K should be fully ACA-compliant QHPs.

On the other hand, the off-exchange enrollments will vary wildly from state to state for any number of demographic, economic or policy reasons (for instance, Vermont & DC don't even have off-exchange individual insurance markets anymore, as I understand it...if you want to buy an individual policy, you have to do so through the VT or DC exchanges).

One other interesting Oregon-specific tidbit: Last year they managed to enroll 68,308 people via their crippled state exchange, CoverOregon, all manually (since the website never worked at all). This broke out to around 342 people per day from 10/1/13 - 4/19/14 (open enrollment technically ended on 4/15, but the final HHS report tacked on 4 more days for some reason or another).

Now, on the one hand, the site was a disaster. On the other hand, that average includes both the December 2013 surge and the late March/early April surge.

This year, Oregon has enrolled 7,885 people since the December deadline surge ended (that is, the 12/19 total was 73,152). That's 492 people per day, not including the benefit of a deadline rush.

That's right: OR is still enrolling people at a rate 44% faster than they did last year.