2018 MIDTERM ELECTION

Time: D H M S

CMS fills in some blanks on OE4 enrollment...including Vermont!!

Along with today's HHS report which confirms more than 11.5 million 2017 QHP selections as of Christmas Eve, CMS has released an additional report which breaks the numbers out by state...and unlike HC.gov's "snapshot" reports (which only cover 39 states), the CMS/ASPE report also confirms the enrollment numbers for all 50 states (PDF).

As I've noted before, until today, there was one state which I had no OE4 data for whatsoever: Vermont (which is ironic given their historic support of healthcare reform, including Sen. Bernie Sanders). This blank has been filled in by today's supplemental CMS/ASPE report: 29,021 QHP selections as of 12/24, which is actually quite a bit higher than I expected for the state (my target for VT is only 30,000 total through 1/31).

Most of the other state numbers aren't impacted by this report because it only runs through 12/24; other reports from the state exchanges and especially last week's HC.gov "snapshot" report mostly include more recent data, making the numbers in this report outdated.

However, I have had to change a few of the numbers, including the following:

  • California: This is the only one which I'm really concerned about. On January 4, Covered CA reported "appx. 1.3 million renewing coverage" and an additional 258,158 new enrollees as of 1/03/17. That should be a total of 1,558,000 people as of 1/03. However, today's report puts the number at 1,464,589 as of 12/24...or 93,411 fewer enrollees just 10 days earlier. It's certainly possible that 93.4K more people signed up in that time, but that seems unlikely; I'll have to sort that out.

UPDATE: OK, it sounds like that "appx. 1.3 million" figure was rounded up from perhaps 1.27 million. If so, that means the 1/03 total is actually around 1,528,000...roughly 30,000 fewer than I had previously estimated, but still 63,000 higher than the 12/24 figure. This makes much more sense.

  • District of Columbia: I had 20,490 QHPs thru 12/19; I've increased this to 20,583 thru 12/24 (93 more people)
  • Idaho: Your Health Idaho reported 98,000 QHPs thru 12/15; today's report claims only 95,586 QHPs thru 12/24 (2,414 fewer people...9 days later. I'll contact YHI to see about the discrepancy).

UPDATE: OK, I heard back from Your Health Idaho; it turns out that their previous 98,000 figure included standalone dental plans. This is an issue which has popped up a few other times as well. They've promised to be more specific in the future. In any event, it looks like the 95,586 figure is accurate for Medical QHPs after all, so I've dropped the number accordingly.

  • Maryland: I had 148,610 thru 12/15; I've increased this to 150,385 thru 12/24 (1,775 more people)
  • Massachusetts: I had 252,548 thru 12/28...but today's report claims it was higher 4 days earlier: 254,239 thru 12/24 (1,691 more people)
  • Vermont: As noted above, I didn't have anything listed for VT, so this fills in a blank: 29,021 thru 12/24.
  • Washington State: I had 180,000 thru 12/20; I've increased this to 194,147 thru 12/24 (14,147 more people in just 4 days)

Overall, assuming all of the HHS report numbers are the accurate figures to use (including the lower numbers from CA and ID), the grand national total is actually 49,098 fewer than I thought.

If the higher numbers from the state exchanges are the accurate ones for California and Idaho, it's 44,313 higher than I had down.

Either way, the current confirmed tally now stands at over 11.6 million QHP selections through New Year's Eve, and will hopefully break 11.9 million by the upcoming January 15th deadline for February coverage.

After that we enter the final push: The January 31st deadline for March coverage...which also overlaps with the first 11 days of the incoming Trump Administration.

That's gonna be...awkward.