END OF 2018 OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD (42 states)

Time: D H M S

District of Columbia: Hallelujah! An official enrollment update at last!! Oh, wait...

Throughout the first two years of the ACA exchanges, the DCI exchange's official enrollment updates were simultaneously clear & simple as well as frustrating. On the one hand, they break out the numbers quite cleanly, such as this one from October 21st of last year:

From October 1, 2013 to October 16, 2015, 173,090 people have enrolled in health insurance coverage through DC Health Link in private insurance or Medicaid:

  • 25,702 people enrolled in a private qualified health plan,
  • 125,261 people have been determined eligible for Medicaid, and
  • 22,127 people enrolled through the DC Health Link small business marketplace (includes Congressional enrollment)

On the other hand, as noted above, these numbers are cumulative, dating all the way back to October 2013 when the exchanges originally launched. This makes the numbers shown kind of useless for the same reason that Chrysler stating that they've sold 100 million cars since the company was founded tells you nothing about how many cars they've sold so far this year.

This year it's been even worse because for whatever reason, the DC exchange hasn't posted any enrollment numbers (official or not) so far this year. The only hard number I've seen was from the official ASPE report a couple of weeks ago, which only brought their numbers up through 12/26/15 (19,299 QHP selections for DC).

However, the cumulative DC reports do provide some guidance if you simply take the difference between the current and previous ones. The one above ran through 10/16/15, so it's conceivable that a handful of people enrolled for December 2015 coverage only between 10/17 - 11/15, but that should be a nominal number.

As it happens, the DC Health Link finally posted hard numbers this morning (why they waited until less than a week before the end of Open Enrollment to do so, I have no idea):

From October 1, 2013 to January 11, 2016, 201,174 people have enrolled in health coverage through DC Health Link in private insurance or Medicaid:

  • 31,188 people enrolled in a private qualified health plan (up to Feb 1, 2016),
  • 144,329 people have been determined eligible for Medicaid, and
  • 25,657 people enrolled through the DC Health Link small business marketplace (includes Congressional enrollment).

Huh...ok, that's still kind of...well...useless, because the QHP difference is just 5,486 people. I suppose that could be the number of new enrollees added (ie, 19K re-enrolleed, plus another 5,486 new enrollees for a total of around 24.7K total), but I'm not sure that's accurate either.

If the DC exchange would just post the number of people enrolled for 2016 only, the way every other exchange does, it would be a lot clearer (then again, Kentucky, New York and Vermont haven't reported anything as of yet, so I guess this is a step up from that...)