AmRescuePlan

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Yesterday's big story on the ACA front was that the HHS Dept. confirmed more than 1.24 million additional Qualified Health Plan (QHP) selections via the federal exchange (HealthCare.Gov) so far during the ongoing Special Enrollment Period (which runs through 8/15).

In addition to that, however, I've also been tracking the (admittedly scattershot) SEP enrollments across the other 15 states (including DC) which operate their own ACA exchanges. So far only 10 of the State-Based Marketplaces (SBMs) have released any SEP enrollment data, and even then it's been very incomplete. Washington State only released data for the first 9 days of the SEP, for instance...while Pennie (Pennsylvania) just released data all the way through yesterday.

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On top of yesterday's confirmation by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid that over 1.24 million Americans have enrolled in ACA coverage via HealthCare.Gov so far during the ongoing Special Enrollment Period, I've also just been informed that Pennsylvania (one of the 15 states operating their own ACA exchange) has enrolled nearly 39,000 people during their SEP since 2/15 as well:

HealthCare.Gov Logo

This just in from CMS...

2021 Marketplace Special Enrollment Period Report: February 15 – May 31, 2021

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reports that over 1.2 million Americans have signed up for health insurance through HealthCare.gov since February 15, the start of the 2021 Marketplace Special Enrollment Period (SEP) opportunity, through May 31, with 376,000 consumers signing up for health insurance in the month of May.[1]

I projected at least 1.2 million SEP enrollees via HC.gov a week or so ago. On the other hand, I also noted that President Biden appeared to have let this number slip a week earlier anyway, so it wasn't that impressive of a projection:

ACA Signups Logo

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.

Last weekend, the Health & Human Services Dept. confirmed this, putting the actual total at around 31 million:

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.

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via MNsure:

Get Covered This Summer: More Minnesotans Are Seeing Cost Savings Through MNsure

ST. PAUL, Minn.—For the first time, Minnesotans with higher incomes who purchase health insurance through MNsure can access advanced premium tax credits that lower the cost of monthly health insurance premiums. MNsure is encouraging Minnesotans whose incomes were previously too high for tax credits to take another look at private health care coverage through MNsure.

So far, over 9,600 Minnesotans have enrolled through MNsure’s special enrollment period, which began on February 16 and ends on July 16. The special enrollment period is open to those who are uninsured or insured through a plan outside of MNsure. Private plans from BlueCross BlueShield, HealthPartners, Medica, Quartz and UCare are available.

ASPE Logo

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.

This news is based on a formal report issued by the Assistant Secretary for Planning & Evaluation (ASPE). Let's take a closer look!

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.

KEY POINTS

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A month ago I noted that by my back-of-the-envelope math, total enrollment in ACA healthcare coverage had likely reached 30 million people, concluding that:

#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):

New York State of Health

Yes, that's right: I'm finally getting over my obsession with county-level COVID-19 vaccination data analysis.

New York State of Health, NY's ACA exchange, just issued the following press release:

Press Release: Governor Cuomo Announces Enrollment through NY State of Health Tops 6 Million

  • State Marketplace Reaches Record-Breaking Levels
  • American Rescue Plan Offers Significantly More Financial Assistance for Consumers 

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that New York State of Health - the state's official health plan Marketplace - has reached a record-breaking enrollment total of 6 million New Yorkers who have signed up for health insurance through the Marketplace across Medicaid, Essential Plan, Child Health Plus and Qualified Health Plans. This momentous milestone coincides with the new and increased financial assistance now available to New Yorkers through the American Rescue Plan for consumers enrolling in commercial coverage.

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via MNsure:

New benefits make health insurance more affordable for more Minnesotans

  • MNsure enrollees are saving almost 20% each month on health insurance plans

ST. PAUL, Minn.—Minnesotans purchasing health insurance through MNsure are seeing increased savings thanks to recent changes to the Affordable Care Act made through the American Rescue Plan. MNsure is reminding Minnesotans in need of health insurance that they can sign up for coverage today through July 16 through the marketplace’s special enrollment period.

“The new and expanded financial help available only through MNsure can help lower the cost of health insurance by hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year for Minnesota families,” said MNsure CEO Nate Clark. “On average, Minnesotans who already have a plan through MNsure are seeing their monthly premiums reduced by almost 20%, which means you can have the peace of mind that comes with having health insurance, while keeping more money in your pocket.”

Access Health CT Logo

Unlike most states which kept their 2021 COVID Special Enrollment Period running continuously while they transitioned to the newly-expanded ACA subsidies, Access Health CT took a 2-week break in order to retool their website for the enhanced financial assistance.

During that break, I reported that the Connecticut ACA exchange enrolled 5,890 people via the SEP from 2/15 - 4/15, or roughly 98 per day, and that this was a rate 3.3x higher than the same time period during the typical pre-COVID era.

Access Health CT shut down their COVID SEP on 4/15, but then re-launched it with the new subsidy formula via the American Rescue Plan on May 1st. Since then, I've been informed, they've enrolled an additional 2,780 people through the exchange, or around 121 per day. That's 4x higher than the ~30/day they averaged in 2019.

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