END OF 2018 OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD (Connecticut & Maryland)

Time: D H M S

How many QHP Selections at the STATE level?

Now that we have a couple of weeks worth of hard enrollment data under our belt, it's time to start trying to break the numbers out by state and category (that is, Active Renewals, Auto-Renewals and most importantly new Enrollees). This is trickier than it sounds for several reasons:

  • HealthCare.Gov hasn't started breaking out their numbers across the 39 states which utilize their platform yet. For them, I had to base my estimates on what portion of the 39-state total each state had in the first 12 days last year (via CMS's Public Use File). I'm assuming the ratios within HC.gov are roughly the same this year.
  • Five of the state-based exchanges haven't released any enrollment data yet (CO, DC, ID, NY and VT)
  • The other seven state-based exchanges have released some hard data, but none of their thru-dates match up with the federal exchange (11/11).
  • Even then, some state exchanges have only released the number of new enrollees, not renewals (CA, WA and--I think--MD), while others have already baked in passive/auto-renewals (MN, RI), which means their renewal numbers may actually decrease over time as some who were auto-renewed already change their minds.
  • In addition, in those states which included auto-renewals (MN, RI), I don't know the breakout between active and passive renewal, so I had to take a guess.

With all that in mind, here's where things stand to the best of my calculations. Again, while the subsets within each category are estimates, the totals include confirmed QHP selections only. I suspect the actual total to date is well over 3 million as of 11/15/17:

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UPDATE: While I'm at it, here's a similar table from last year which breaks out the state-level enrollees by Renewal/New Enrollments. I'm missing 3 states (Idaho, Massachusetts and Vermont), but I have the national total from the other 47 states + DC: About 8.4 million 2016 enrollees re-enrolled for 2017, or about 69% of the total.

More importantly for projecting 2018's total enrollment, those 8.4 million people represented about 66.2% of the 12.8 million who selected QHPs during the 2016 Open Enrollment Period. Assuming a similar ratio, I would expect roughly 8.1 million 2017 enrollees to re-enroll for 2018.

If so, that means in order to break last year's 12.2 million total, 4.1 million new enrollees will have to sign up; in order to break 2016's 12.7 million record, around 4.6 million will have to do so.

I'm still missing new enrollee data from several states above (DC, Idaho, New York and Vermont), and some of the new enrollee data from other states is a bit out of date, but I've confirmed at least 431,000 new enrollees to date, so that leaves 4.2 million to go...

Of course, my rather pessimistic pre-November projection was actually only for around 10 million QHPs total. Assuming 85% of current enrollees are subsidized and that most of the other 15% drop coverage due to the CSR sabotage-fueled ~30% average rate hikes, that would mean only around 6.9 million re-enrolling, plus another 3.1 million or so new enrollees for 10 million total. As always, I hope I'm proven very, very wrong on this and will be more than happy to have egg on my face in a couple of months: