BOOM: 7.3M Select Affordable #ACA Marketplace Coverage Since Start of Open Enrollment Period; up 39% y/y so far
More than 7 Million Selected Affordable Health Coverage in ACA Marketplace Since Start of Open Enrollment Period
- Enrollment increases continue as the deadline for January coverage fast approaches
Nearly 7.3 million people have selected an Affordable Care Act (ACA) Health Insurance Marketplace plan since the 2024 Marketplace Open Enrollment Period (OEP) opened on November 1. This represents activity through December 2 (Week 5) for the 32 states using HealthCare.gov and through November 25 (Week 4) for the 18 states and the District of Columbia with State-based Marketplaces (SBMs). Total plan selections include more than 1.6 million people (23% of total) who are new to the Marketplaces for 2024, and 5.7 million people (77% of total) who have active 2023 coverage and returned to their respective Marketplaces to renew their coverage or select a new plan for 2024.
Again, it's irritating that they're choosing to use different "thru dates" for the federal exchange vs. the state-based exchanges, but that's how they did it last year so I can still run an apples-to-apples comparison...almost. The graph below shows how these numbers have increased since the same time period last year. I've had to adjust slightly for the fact that there's one fewer day included for both the federal exchange (32 days vs. 33) and the state exchanges (25 days vs. 26).
I've also had to adjust for the fact that Virginia moved from the federal exchange to its own state-based exchange this year, which is further complicated by CMS reporting 5 weeks for the federal exchange but only 4 weeks for state-based exchange. Otherwise, the subtotals are accurate, while the new/returning breakout for 2023 are estimates,but should still be pretty close:
While the latest update shows a slowdown from the dramatic year over year increases a couple of weeks ago, the initial enrollment numbers are still significantly higher across the board:
- HC.gov is 42% higher (49% more new enrollees, 40% more returning enrollees)
- SBMs are 17% higher (14% more new enrollees, 18% more returning enrollees)
- Overall: 39% higher (44% more new enrollees, 37% more returning enrollees)
The 2024 Marketplace Open Enrollment Period runs from November 1, 2023, to January 15, 2024, for states using the HealthCare.gov platform. Consumers who enroll by midnight on December 15 can get full-year coverage that starts January 1, 2024. State-based Marketplace enrollment deadlines vary. State-specific deadlines and other information are available in the State-based Marketplace Open Enrollment Fact Sheet.
“On top of last year’s record numbers, enrollment for Marketplace health insurance at HealthCare.gov is again exceeding expectations,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “Health care coverage means peace of mind. It means protection. And now, thanks to the historic Inflation Reduction Act, more Americans than ever can sign up for coverage with lower costs and better benefits. There’s still time, so I urge you to shop at HealthCare.gov and sign up for a health plan that meets your needs and your pocketbook.”
“I’m thrilled to see that more than 7 million people have signed up for Marketplace coverage nationwide since open enrollment began. The ACA Marketplace continues to grow. The continued increase in enrollment is confirmation that the need for affordable, quality health care coverage is strong,” CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure said. “I encourage those who are seeking health care coverage to visit HealthCare.gov before the December 15 deadline for their coverage to begin on January 1.”
The Biden-Harris Administration has continued its commitment to making health insurance available and affordable to everyone. For three years, the Inflation Reduction Act and the American Rescue Plan have helped keep insurance affordable. The administration continues to issue Navigator Awards, allowing organizations to hire staff who are trained to help consumers find affordable, comprehensive health coverage. Navigators, as they are known, have been key to helping consumers in every Marketplace state.
The Biden-Harris Administration encourages all families to visit HealthCare.gov and check out the health care coverage options and savings available to them. Because of continuing provisions in the Inflation Reduction Act, CMS expects 9 out of 10 customers to be eligible for savings.
People with current coverage through HealthCare.gov are encouraged to return and shop to see if another plan better meets their needs at a lower cost.
Many people are eligible for Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), however those who are no longer eligible for Medicaid or CHIP, should visit HealthCare.gov to see if they are eligible to enroll in a low-cost, quality health plan today.
As I noted last week, over 822,000 Medicaid Unwinding folks had moved to an ACA exchange plan through the end of August, plus another 120,000 who enrolled in BHP plans in Minnesota & New York. CMS hasn't posted the September report yet but should do so soon.
Individuals will also benefit from a highly competitive Marketplace. More than 90% of HealthCare.gov enrollees will be able to choose among three or more plans. Standardized plan options are available and offer the same deductibles and cost-sharing for certain benefits. These plans have the same out-of-pocket limits as other standardized plans within the same health plan category, making it easier for consumers to compare and choose plans. Most of these standardized plan options offer many services pre-deductible, including primary care, generic drugs, preferred brand drugs, urgent care, specialist visits, mental health and substance use outpatient office visits, as well as speech, occupational, and physical therapies.
Individuals can enroll or re-enroll in health insurance coverage for 2024 by visiting HealthCare.gov, or CuidadoDeSalud.gov, or by calling 1-800-318-2596 to fill out an application. Individuals wanting assistance signing up for coverage may go to Find Local Help on HealthCare.gov to find a Navigator, Certified Application Counselor, or agent or broker.
I'll be posting another analysis of the state-by-state numbers, including additional confirmed ACA exchange enrollment I've put together on top of these totals soon.