Maryland: 61K QHPs, 41.8K Medicaid in first month (UPDATED)

Hat Tip To: 

Hmmm...this is different; I'm pretty sure this is the first time that I've been quoted in a formal enrollment data press release...


Exchange enrolls more than 100,000 at one­ month mark

BALTIMORE (Dec. 16, 2014) — The Board of Directors of the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange (MHBE) today celebrated the progress of the Maryland Health Connection one month into its open enrollment. More than 100,000 Marylanders have signed up for 2015 health coverage.

Maryland Health Connection has enrolled 105,902 people — including 61,031 in Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) and 41,871 in Medicaid. By comparison, during the first open enrollment a year ago, 1,278 Marylanders enrolled in private QHPs through the marketplace during its first 30 days.

A rebuilt website that enables consumers to “browse” plans without needing to create personal accounts, a much larger schedule of enrollment fairs across the state than a year ago and additional “storefront” spaces where Marylanders can get assistance enrolling in person have helped propel the improved results. The changes have been noted in the media, including:

  •, in a Nov. 24 post, said: “Maryland has done a complete turnaround this year.”
  • Baltimore Business Journal, comparing the year­over­year enrollment periods in a Nov. 25 article, stated: “This year, so far, appears to be a different story on the newly rebuilt website.”
  • Carol Anderson’s Dec. 10 blog found this year’s health insurance marketplace “dramatically improved over the version that launched in the fall of 2013.”

“It has been a totally different experience this year,” said Dr. Joshua M. Sharfstein, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Chairman of the MHBE board. “I am so grateful to all of the people in our state who have worked together for this success.”

The wording of it refers to "first 30 days" which would technically only run through Sunday night, which I've confirmed with the MD Health Benefit Exchange.

In other words, this 61K figure doesn't include yesterday.

Now, Maryland's deadline isn't until Thursday, so they probably didn't have the massive spike yesterday that most states did...but I'm sure it was still a huge day.

UPDATE: OK, strike that; they've informed me that this does include yesterday after all. Oh well...still an extremely impressive update.

In short, last year, Maryland enrolled a total of 67,757 people in 6 1/2 months. They've now managed to enroll 90% of last year's total in just 1 month.

UPDATE: To put Maryland in context, here's how their enrollments have flowed so far this year:

  • 1,915 in 4 days = 478/day
  • 7,943 in 7 days = 1,134/day
  • 14,749 in 10 days = 1,474/day
  • 29,543 in 20 days =  1,477/day
  • 45,014 in 24 days = 1,875/day
  • 61,013 in 31 days = 1,968/day

…and that’s the cumulative averages, not broken out by time window.

For comparison, last year they averaged 339/day for the full 6.5 mo period. MD is enrolling people at 5.8x the rate they did last time around so far. Obviously this will drop dramatically after Thursday, but expect it to pick back up again in mid-February.