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BOOM: 1.08M Selected QHP Policies as of 2nd Week (off by 4%)

Some Guy, 11/12/15:

By my reckoning, total national QHP selections should hit around 1.33 million by the end of Week Two, of which around 1.07 million should be via HealthCare.Gov. I the expect around 1.9 million in Week Three, around 2.4 million by Thanksgiving, and then start ramping up to around 6.3 million by the 12/15 deadline for most states.

CMS Dept., just moments ago:

Health Insurance Marketplace Open Enrollment Snapshot: Week 2: November 8 – November 14, 2015

The second week of Open Enrollment for Marketplace coverage saw millions more Americans exploring their health insurance options by calling the call center, attending enrollment events, or visiting HealthCare.gov or CuidadoDeSalud.gov.

“In communities across the country, Americans are turning to HealthCare.gov or CuidadoDeSalud.gov to get covered for 2016,” Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell said. “We’re pleased that people are getting the help they need and finding affordable options. More than a million consumers have signed-up for Marketplace coverage for the first time or have returned to renew their coverage.”

Similar to last year, each week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will release weekly Open Enrollment snapshots for the HealthCare.gov platform, which is used by the Federally-facilitated Marketplaces and State Partnership Marketplaces, as well as some State-based Marketplaces. These snapshots provide point-in-time estimates of weekly plan selections, call center activity and visits to HealthCare.gov or CuidadoDeSalud.gov. The final number of plan selections associated with enrollment activity to date could fluctuate as plan changes or cancellations occur, such as in response to life changes like starting a new job or getting married. In addition, the weekly snapshot only looks at new plan selections, active plan renewals and, starting at the end of December, auto-renewals and does not include the number of consumers who paid their premiums to effectuate their enrollment.

Comparisons between this year and last year are difficult for a variety of reasons; including that the Thanksgiving holiday fell during the second week of last year’s Open Enrollment period.

HHS will produce more detailed reports that look at plan selections across the Federally-facilitated Marketplace and State-based Marketplaces later in the Open Enrollment period.

Definitions and details on the data are included in the glossary.

I originally projected 1.07 million QHPs via HealthCare.Gov by Nov. 14th back on the 12th, but then decided to be a bit more cautious later in the week, tamping the number back down a bit to 1.0 million on the nose. A reasonable measure of my accuracy would be right in between these, at 1.035 million.

  • 1.035 million vs. 1,077,876 = 4.0% off for the first two weeks
  • alternately, 491,902 vs. 534,778 = 8.0% off for the second week by itself

Not bad!

Unfortunately, they still didn't include a state-by-state breakout...hopefully they'll do so for Week Three...

I actually suspect I've under estimated the additional state-based QHP tally, mainly because Rhode Island "front-loaded" their autorenewals (around 30K higher than I would've expected at this point) and because Colorado seems to be overperforming so far. As a result, I'm going back to assuming roughly 1.4 million QHPs nationally as of 11/14, as I noted back on 11/08.

Other than that, not too much else to report here without the state-level numbers. The "Renewal" vs. "New" ratio is virtually the same as last week (2/3 renewals, 1/3 new), so nothing has changed there.

OK, so what about this week (Week Three)? Well, it should actually be roughly the same story, likely dropping off slightly to around 500,000 even. If so, that would bring the HC.gov total up to around 1.58 million as of November 21st, or around 2.05 million nationally.

The week after that is when I expect the first significant pattern change; things will likely drop off considerably for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend (especially Thursday and Friday, of course), possibly bringing the 4th week in at under 300,000 for HC.gov (1.88 million cumulatively), but I'll make a formal estimate after next week's figures come in.

UPDATE: Oh, here's the graph before I update it with today's confirmed numbers: