Held: Plaintiffs do not have standing to challenge §5000A(a)’s minimum essential coverage provision because they have not shown a past or future injury fairly traceable to defendants’ conduct enforcing the specific statutory provision they attack as unconstitutional. Pp. 4–16.
Back on May 11th, I noted that total enrollment in healthcare policies either specifically created by (or expanded to more people by) the Affordable Care Act had likely broken 30 million Americans...an all-time high for the healthcare reform law signed by President Obama 11 years ago.
Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a new report that shows 31 million Americans have health coverage through the Affordable Care Act – a record. The report also shows that there have been reductions in uninsurance rates in every state in the country since the law’s coverage expansions took effect. People served by the health Marketplaces and Medicaid expansion have reached record highs.
Moments ago I posted the news that the HHS Dept. (via the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid) has confirmed what I wrote about nearly a month ago: Enrollment in ACA healthcare policies are at an all-time high, with over 31 million Americans currently covered by either ACA exchange plans, ACA Medicaid expansion or ACA Basic Health Plan coverage.
Health Coverage Under the Affordable Care Act: Enrollment Trends and State Estimates
Based on enrollment data from late 2020 and early 2021, approximately 31 million people were enrolled in Marketplace or Medicaid expansion coverage related to provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the highest total on record.
#ACA Enrollment Is At An All-Time High Right Now Almost Any Way You Slice It.
I based this on a rough comparison of ACA enrollment in 2016 (which saw the highest ACA Open Enrollment Period enrollment to date, with nearly 12.7 million people selecting Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) during the official OEP) versus the most recent data available as of spring 2021.
My rough math was as follows (spring 2016 / spring 2021):
Michigan Insurers on HealthCare.Gov Provide Consumer Flexibility
(LANSING, MICH) Through an agreement announced today between Governor Gretchen Whitmer, the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS), and all nine of Michigan’s Marketplace insurers, Michiganders enrolled in a health plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace can now take advantage of expanded tax subsidies offered by the American Rescue Plan without having to restart their deductibles when they switch to another plan offered by their current insurer, and in some cases even if they choose a plan through another insurer.
I've noted before that enrollment in Michigan's ACA Medicaid expansion program, "Healthy Michigan", has risen sharply over the past year since the COVID-19 pandemic hit; it's up by over 1/3 since last February.
However, it's also worth noting that non-ACA Medicaid enrollment has also jumped significantly since the pandemic arrived. I've dug into data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid, the Kaiser Family Foundation and Michigan's Health Dept. archives and put together the graph below, showing that non-ACA Medicaid enrollment has risen from around 1.66 million Michiganders in February 2020 to over 1.92 million today, a 16% increase.
Combined, total Medicaid enrollment is up by around 21% to over 2.82 million as of April 2021.
As of April 5th, the Healthy Michigan program (that's the branding of Michigan's ACA Medicaid expansion) notes 897,261 enrollees. That's a net increase of 224,000 Michiganders enrolled in the program since last February, or over 33%.
With this as backdrop, consider the timing of the following events:
Five weeks ago, right after Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away, I once again wrote about the different options available to Democrats to save the ACA from a potentially disastrous SCOTUS ruling next spring...each of which would require them holding a trifecta in the House, the Senate and of course the Presidency:
1. Pass a simple bill changing the federal mandate penalty to an amount higher than $0.00.
2. Pass a simple bill clarifying that the mandate is separate from the rest of the ACA.
3. Pass a simple bill striking out the underlying mandate language itself.
As I understand it, two of these would also require the newly-Dem controlled Senate to also kill the filibuster (or to somehow convince enough Republicans to agree to hit the 60-vote threshold), while the third (raising the penalty back over $0.00) could be done with just 50 votes (+ VP Kamala Harris as the tiebreaker) via the reconciliation process...which itself gets messy.
A month ago, incumbent Democratic Senator Gary Peters of Michigan and his Republican challenger John James were both interviewed as part of a Detroit Regional Chamber series on several issues, including healthcare policy and the ACA.