2018 MIDTERM ELECTION

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Maryland: 4,700 #ACATaxTime enrollees, 125.5K *PAID* QHPs to date

Maryland is the second state to release their official, complete #ACATaxTime special enrollment period figures (Washington State ended their tax SEP on 4/17). Healthcare.Gov, DC Health Link and Covered California have released partial reports, while 3 states didn't offer the tax SEP at all, so this leaves 8 states which haven't given any #ACATaxTime numbers yet (Vermont has extended theirs even further, until the end of May).

For Maryland, here's the press release:

BALTIMORE (May 1, 2015) — More than 4,700 Marylanders took advantage of a special six week enrollment period that allowed them to enroll for health insurance to avoid an additional federal tax penalty for 2015 if they had already owed a tax penalty for lacking health coverage in 2014.

Marylanders who applied for the special enrollment period, which ran from March 15 through yesterday, attested that they owe the penalty for lacking health insurance in 2014 and that they became aware of this after the Feb. 15 close of open enrollment for 2015 coverage.

The tax penalty imposed for individuals who did not have health coverage in 2014 was 1 percent of gross household income over the federal income tax filing threshold, or $95 per individual – whichever is greater. For 2015, the penalty increases to 2 percent of gross household income over the federal income tax filing threshold, or $325 per individual – whichever is greater.

As of April 29, 125,535 Marylanders have enrolled in Qualified Health Plans through Maryland Health Connection, and 248,475 Marylanders have enrolled in Medicaid since Nov. 15, 2014. The QHP enrollment total includes the 4,709 people during the tax special enrollment period.

A couple of important points here:

  • First, MD's official QHP tally as of 2/22 was 120,145, so they've actually added 5,390 since then. Besides the 4,709 tax-specific enrollees, the other 681 are people who enrolled due to qualifying life changes (getting married/divorced, giving birth/adopting a child, losing their existing coverage, moving in-state and so forth).
  • Second (and more importantly), I've confirmed with MD Health Connection that the 125,535 figure factors in cancellations/attrition. In other words, they've already subtracted those who either never paid their first premium or who have already cancelled their policy. That's important, because by my best estimates, Maryland's cumulative total QHP selection total should be something like 130,000 (4,700 tax-specific, plus another 4,800 or so added to date via life changes).

If so, then that would mean: 120,145 as of 2/22, plus 4,700 tax-specific QHPs, plus 4,800 life-change QHPs, minus 4,100 via non-payment/cancellations = 125,535

This would also mean that Maryland's QHP payment rate is somewhere around 92 - 96%, (125K out of 130-135K), which would be excellent.

In fact, the only way that their payment rate could be lower than 90% would be if the grand total was 140K or higher, which would require 20K selections since 2/22, which is highly unlikely.

In any event, this brings the confirmed number of #ACATaxTime QHP selections up to at least 110,500 (68K via HC.gov, 33K in CA, 4,800 in WA & 4,700 in MD).

This also brings the grand total of confirmed QHPs nationally up to the 11.9 million mark, to at least 11,904,402.

Meanwhile, on the Medicaid side, Maryland's net increase since ACA expansion kicked in is over 263K (248.5K via the exchange plus around 15,000 added to traditional Medicaid, I would imagine):

Medicaid and Maryland Children’s Health Program enrollment is 1,266,186 as of April 29. Since Dec. 31, 2013, the net change in Medicaid enrollment is +263,329 as of April 29. This figure takes into account that individuals lose Medicaid coverage because of changes in household, age and income, as well as redeterminations.