START OF 2018 OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD

Time: D H M S

How I expect the #ACAOvertime period to play out...and beyond...

As I noted last night, I've had to restructure my national projections due to the IRS verification issue on Saturday, the massive snowstorms in the northeast and other odds & ends which have led practically every state (except for HI, KY, MN & VT) to announce some sort of enrollment extension period. A few are "full" extensions (ie, you don't have to have already started the process yet); most are "waiting in line" extensions (you have to have already started your application as of midnight Sunday).

The cut-off dates also vary widely, from as soon as Friday the 20th (California) to as late as Saturday the 28th (Maryland & New York). A few haven't given any hard date, although the 28th is the most practical cut-off point (at least for coverage to start the next day, that is).

Anyway, here's my revised estimates of how the final week of the official Open Enrollment Period played out...and how I expect the "overtime" period to look:

  • 11/15/14 - 2/08/15: 10.48 million QHPs selected nationally
  • Monday, 2/09: 120k
  • Tuesday, 2/10: 130k
  • Wednesday, 2/11: 140k
  • Thursday, 2/12: 170k
  • Friday, 2/13: 220k
  • Saturday, 2/14: 190k (10 hour IRS income verification glitch)
  • Sunday, 2/15: 440k (a far cry from the 700k I had been originally thinking, but still a one-day record, I believe)

If this was accurate, the grand total as of midnight last night should have been roughly 11.9 million exchange-based QHP selections.

Going forward, I'm expecting things to play out something like the following:

  • Monday, 2/16: 130k
  • Tuesday, 2/17: 110k
  • Wednesday, 2/18: 70k
  • Thursday, 2/19: 60k
  • Friday, 2/20: 50k (cut-off for California)
  • Saturday, 2/21: 40k
  • Sunday, 2/22: 40k (cut-off for 37 states on HC.gov + Idaho)
  • Monday, 2/23: 20k (cut-off for Massachusetts & Rhode Island)
  • Tuesday, 2/24: 10k
  • Wednesday, 2/25: 10k
  • Thursday, 2/26: 10k
  • Friday, 2/27: 10k
  • Saturday, 2/28: 10k

...for a grand total of roughly 12.45 million by the end of February.

Obviously the pattern could end up being quite different from this, but this seems about right to me.

After that, the next Big Enrollment events/issues will be:

  • Mid-to-Late March: NOW is the appropriate time to ask the question, "But how many have PAID???"
    (My guess: Appx. 11 million, minus the 200K dropped for residency issues)
  • June: It's my understanding that the SCOTUS will issue their ruling re. King v. Burwell.
    (If they shoot it down, all is well, If they rule for the plaintiffs, all bets are off/all hell breaks loose.)
  • March - End of Year: Off-Season Special Enrollment additions vs. Gradual Attrition Rate subtractions
    (Depends on a variety of factors...the King vs. Burwell case being the single biggest one)

Assuming the King case is shot down and there's no other major surprises along the lines of the 200K residency cancellations, I expect to end 2015 with roughly 10.3 - 10.5 million effectuated enrollees...unless they do the "Tax Season Enrollment Period" thing, in which case I figure about 1 million more people will be squeezed in...in which case the end-of-year tally will likely be more like 10.6-10.8 million.