2021 OEP Week 2 HC.gov Snapshot Report: 804K QHPs; 1.62 million total

Hot off the presses, via the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid:

Week Two, November 8-November 14, 2020

In Week Two of the 2021 Open Enrollment period, 803,741 people selected plans using the HealthCare.gov platform. As in past years, enrollment weeks are measured Sunday through Saturday. 

Every week during Open Enrollment, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will release enrollment snapshots for the HealthCare.gov platform, which is used by the Federally-facilitated Exchange and some State-based Exchanges. 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 during a reporting period may change due to plan modifications or cancellations. In addition, the weekly snapshot only reports new plan selections and active plan renewals and does not report the number of consumers who have paid premiums to effectuate their enrollment.

As a reminder, New Jersey and Pennsylvania transitioned to their own State-based Exchange platforms for 2021, thus they are not on the HealthCare.gov platform for 2021 coverage. Those two states accounted for 578,251 plan selections or 7% of all plan selections during the 2020 Open Enrollment Period. These enrollees’ selections will not appear in our figures until we announce the State-based Exchange plan selections.

It's a bit tricky to compare the first weekly report against the previous year because the snapshot reports run Sunday - Saturday. Last year Nov. 1st fell on a Friday, so "Week 1" was actually only 2 days; "Week 2" included the following 7 days, for 9 days total.

With the second week included, I can compare 14 days in OEP 2021 vs. 16 days in OEP 2020, which is still apples to oranges but a lot closer. So far the 2021 season is running around 10% higher than last year on a daily basis:

  • First 14 days of OEP 2021: 115,864 QHP selections/day (1,622,106 total)
  • First 16 days of OEP 2020: 104,337 QHP selections/day (1,669,401 total)

Keep in mind, however, that this is if you include Pennsylvania and New Jersey! Those two states enrolled a total of 102,210 people in the first 16 days last year, so it's actually:

  • First 14 days of OEP 2021: 115,864 QHP selections/day (1,622,106 total)
  • First 16 days of OEP 2020 (w/out NJ/PA): 97,949 QHP selections/day (1,567,191 total)

...or 18.3% higher per day than last year, which is fantastic, especially under the circumstances (the pandemic, the looming Supreme Court decision and the ongoing coup attempt by Donald Trump to overthrow the election results).

It's also important to note the breakout between current enrollees actively renewing their policies and new consumers enrolling.

Last year, in the first 16 days, it was a 74% / 26% split between the two. This year, for the first 14 days it's split 79/21. It's too early to say whether that means much, of course; the ratios could easily shift as we go forward.