AmRescuePlan

Covered California Logo

via Covered California:

  • Covered California’s enrollment continues to surge — with 364,000 signing up since February, more than double normal enrollment rates — as more people sign up for coverage to benefit from the new savings and lower premiums available through the American Rescue Plan.
  • Lower-income households are getting a quality plan for an average of $35 per month, with more than 738,000 people getting brand-name plans for just $1 per month.
  • Middle-income consumers, who were previously ineligible for federal financial help, are saving an average of nearly $800 per month and seeing their monthly premiums reduced by more than 70 percent.
  • Covered California’s increased enrollment includes a higher proportion of African American and Latino Californians, two of the communities hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing recession.
  • Those who enroll by Aug. 31 would be insured starting Sept. 1.
Pennie Logo

I'm gonna be posting mea culpas for a few days for missing important ACA-related announcements over the past few weeks.

(again, this is outdated as the SEP is now over but it includes some important data points)

via Pennie, Pennsylvania's state-based ACA exchange:

Wolf Administration Commemorates Pennie’s Two-Year Anniversary; Encourages Pennsylvanians to Enroll in Health Coverage

  • Deadline to Receive 2021 Savings on Health Coverage is August 15

Harrisburg, PA – The Wolf Administration today commemorated the two-year anniversary of Pennie, Pennsylvania’s state-based health exchange. To date, more than 335,000 consumers have enrolled for coverage through Pennie and, because of the American Rescue Plan, average premiums after subsidies have dropped by half since the beginning of the year, down to $86 a month.

MNsure Logo

I'm gonna be posting mea culpas for a few days for missing important ACA-related announcements over the past few weeks.

As I've noted several times before, the American Rescue Plan includes an extremely helpful provision for any American who received unemployment benefits at any point during 2021. The short version is that if you received UI benefits for even a single week this year and want to enroll in ACA exchange coverage, your household income will be defined as being 133% of the Federal Poverty Level for purposes of ACA subsidy eligibility regardless of how high or low your actual 2021 income ends up being.

This means, in turn, that you're eligible for a fully-subsidized ACA exchange plan...that is, there will be at least one Silver plan available for $0/month in premiums after subsidies are applied.

Get Covered 2021!

As of midnight on August 15th, the Big Deadline for the 2021 "No Excuse Needed" ACA Special Enrollment Period has come and gone in most states.

HOWEVER, you can still #GetCovered for the rest of 2021 in a few states (including two of the largest ones), and there are still millions of uninsured Americans nationally who are eligible for ACA-compliant coverage for the rest of this year via other options. Let's review!

2021 ACA Special Enrollment Period (SEP): If you live in California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, New Jersey, New York or Vermont, the deadline for the "no questions asked" SEP goes beyond 8/15. In CA, DC & NY it actually runs through the end of the year!

Covered California Logo

My recent obsession with COVID vaccination rates means that I've fallen embarrassingly behind on my annual ACA rate change project, and nothing illustrates this more than the fact that Covered California issued this press release over two weeks ago and I'm just now getting to writing about it:

  • The American Rescue Plan will continue to provide lower premiums, at levels never seen before, throughout the entire 2022 coverage year.
  • The new and expanded financial help has led to a record 1.6 million people enrolled in Covered California, which gives the state one of the healthiest consumer pools in the nation for the seventh consecutive year.
  • The record enrollment and healthy consumer pool were key factors in negotiating a preliminary rate increase for California’s individual market of just 1.8 percent in 2022, and a three-year average of only 1.1 percent (2020-2022).
  • With expansions of coverage by several carriers and a new carrier in one region, consumers will have even more choice: All Californians will have two or more choices, 94 percent will be able to choose from three carriers or more, and 81 percent of Californians will have four or more choices.
  • Consumers can sign up now to benefit from the increased financial help provided by the American Rescue Plan, which is lowering premiums and enabling 700,000 people to get covered for only $1 per month.
HealthCare.Gov Logo

The previous CMS Special Enrollment Period report put the HC.gov total at 1.52 million via HC.gov as of the end of June. In addition, the press release and Sec. Becerra's comments noted that there were at least 600,000 additional SEP enrollments via the 15 state-based ACA exchanges (SBMs), for a total of at least 2.1 million nationally as of the end of June.

Last week I gave a rough estimate of perhaps another 340K more new enrollees via HC.gov for the month of June along with another ~135K via the 15 SBMs, which would bring the grand total up to around 2.57 million nationally.

As I noted this morning, CMS has confirmed almost exactly this total as of the end of July: Over 1.8 million via HC.gov plus another 723,000 via the SBMs, or over 2.5 million total. In fact, when you read the exact figures in the HC.gov report, it's even closer than that:

ACA Signups

Five days ago I noted that, based on an offhand comment I heard during a White House webinar about the ongoing ACA Special Enrollment Period, it sounds like HealthCare.Gov quietly added over 100,000 new enrollees during the final week of July.

Based on this and the existing data I have from HealthCare.Gov and the 15 state-based ACA exchanges, I concluded that:

Also, as always, remember that everything above refers to the federal exchange only; the 15 states which operate their own ACA exchanges comprise roughly 29% of the 2.1 million QHP selections nationally as of the end of June. A couple of state-based exchanges have already terminated their own SEPs (Idaho, Minnesota and Massachusetts), but the rest are still chugging along, so assuming a similar ratio for July, that would put the monthly total at around 475,000 nationally, for a grand total of roughly 2.57 million or so as of July 31st.

HealthCare.Gov Logo

Note: I'm waiting for confirmation of what I thought I heard yesterday.

On Wednesday evening, I joined a webinar hosted by the White House's Office of Public Engagement highlighting yesterday's announcement by CMS that the enhanced ACA subsidies provided by the American Rescue Plan have helped over 2.5 million current ACA exchange enrollees via HealthCare.Gov reduce their net premiums by 40% on average.

HealthCare.Gov Logo

This just in from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services:

Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released new data that shows returning consumers can save, on average, 40% off of their monthly premiums because of enhanced tax credits in the American Rescue Plan (ARP), which  President Biden has proposed to extend as part of his Build Back Better Agenda. Since the implementation of the tax credits on April 1, 2021, 34% of new and returning consumers have found coverage for $10 or less per month on HealthCare.gov. A state-by-state breakdown of savings is available here.

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