The February HHS Report included some especially confusing numbers out of the two largest state-run exchanges, California and New York, as both seemed shockingly low given how successful they both seemed to be doing in the first half of the month.
In the case of California, they were kicking serious ass in the first half of February, averaging around 7,200 QHP enrollments per day. Unfortunately, a few days later the CoveredCA exchange was hit with a very nasty technical problem which brought things to a standstill for not the 3 days that I thought, but 5 days. Result? The daily average dropped from 7,200/day in the first half to only 2,800/day for the second half of the month:
Enrollment in Obamacare coverage slowed last month in California, hurt by a recent website outage.
New federal data show 868,936 Californians signed up for health insurance in the state's exchange through March 1.
OK, now that I've resolved the 290K discrepancy from the HHS report (short answer: they corrected the report sometime yesterday, but the total hasn't changed), and have confirmed that someone from HHS/CMS is checking on the 40K New York QHP discrepancy, I've finally been able to update both The Spreadsheets (QHP and Medicaid) and The Graph with the latest data. Here's where things stand as of the morning of March 12th:
PRIVATE QHP ENROLLMENTS:
Exchange-based, Paid or Unpaid for Legitimate Reasons Only: 3.91 Million
Exchange-based, Including Unpaid Enrollments: 4.45 Million (this is the figure used to measure against the CBO 6M/7M projections)
I ran into a similar issue a month ago, and thought I had straightened it out, but there's a major disconnect between the official HHS numbers for New York and the NY State of Health press release data.
According to HHS, New York only enrolled 33,328 people in February:
Colorado's offiicial metrics press release from last week only runs through March 1st, but contributor deaconblues found an interesting county-by-county breakdown which runs through the 8th. No Medicaid data, but the QHP number is up to 87,766, a 2,885 increase over a week earlier.
Y'know, no one wants up-to-date data more than me, but did Rhode Island really have to release their latest state enrollment data TODAY, while I'm still in the middle of compiling/updating the HHS report???
Anyway, They're up to 16,345 paid + 3,345 unpaid QHPs, and 48,602 new Medicaid enrollments, plus some SHOP updates. Yeesh.
Enrollment data (Oct. 1, 2013 through March 8, 2014)
Total HealthSource RI enrollments (including those who have not yet paid): 19,690
Paid enrollments: 16,345
Medicaid enrollments (per EOHHS): 48,602
Small employer applications initiated: 1,132
Small employer enrollment: 133 (these 133 employers represent 491 covered employees and 795 covered lives)
OK, as noted a little earlier, I underestimated the February HHS Report for Exchange-based Private QHP enrollment by about 4.2%:
My Projection: 902,800 (4.202 million total)
Actual Enrollments: 942,833 (4.242 million total)
I'm perfectly happy to have underestimated. As for where the extra 40,000 enrollments came from, my initial guess would be that California, in particular, started ramping up their big March blitz a bit earlier and more successfully than I figured, which, again, I'm absolutely fine with.Update: Nope, actually, California's numbers plummetted in the 2nd half of Feb due to that ugly technical outage; see below for details.
I'm busily plugging the new enrollment numbers into the spreadsheet even as I type this, and will be updating with various notes and observations, so keep checking in.
OK, I've entered the QHP data; a couple of things to note:
UPDATE: On the down side, I was off by 4% this time around.
On the up side, I UNDERESTIMATED:
Actual Feb. enrollments: 942,833, for a total of 4,242,325 thru 3/01/14.
Sarah Kliff at Vox just announced that the February HHS report is expected to be released today at around 4:00pm. A few items in anticipation of that:
As I've noted several times, I'm projecting the report to total around 902,000 exchange-based private QHP enrollments for the month of February (technically 2/02 - 3/01)
If accurate, this would bring the cumulative total of exchange-based private QHP enrollments to 4.202 million (from 10/1/13 - 3/01/14)
From the data I have, the average daily enrollment rate in February was almost identical to that of January, which had about 1.146 million QHP enrollments. HOWEVER, the January report included five weeks of data (12/28 - 2/01), while the February report will only include four weeks (2/02 - 3/01). Therefore, even at the same daily average, it'll be about 20% lower no matter what.
If you want to get REALLY specific, call it 902,800 and 4,202,292.
I've been dead-on target 6 times in a row without hyping up my projections beforehand. This time I am hyping myself up beforehand, so I'll probably be way off...but as long as I've UNDERestimated the tally, I'll be perfectly fine with that...
The report will be released in about 5 minutes, but my kid gets home from school in about 10, so it'll be a good 20 minutes before I can really post anything. Feel free to follow Sarah Kliff of Vox in the meantime!
For the most part this is just a standard update for Connecticut, which continues to be one of the most successful ACA exchanges with little drama; private QHPs are up another 2,065 from 58,469 on March 5th to 60,534 as of yesterday, while new Medicaid enrollments have gone up from 82,764 to 92,027, an increase of 9,263. Connecticut recently gave a "Paid QHP" percentage as 91%; assuming this still holds, I have them at 55K paid / 5,534 unpaid.
However, in a nice surprise, the latest update also separates the Medicaid numbers out into "strict expansion" (69,692) and "woodworkers" (22,335). This makes CT among only a handful of states to pinpoint the Medicaid enrollees in this way; hopefully the other expansion states will follow.
According to Access Health CT, 60,534 people have signed up for plans with Anthem, Healthy CT, and ConnectiCare. The rest, or 92,027 individuals, have signed up for Medicaid plans that are funded by the federal government.
Nevada just updated their QHP enrollments for the first week of March: 20,930 paid (up from 19,840 on 3/01) and 9,085 unpaid (up from 8,695 on 3/01). The combined tally is an increase of 1,480, from 28,535 to 30,015.
Update as of 3/8: 30,015 individuals have confirmed Qualified Health Plan selections with Nevada Health Link, 20,930 have paid.
There's a lot of buzz today about a new Gallup poll which states that the total uninsured rate has fall by about 1.2% since the end of last year:
The percentage of Americans without health insurance continues to fall, measuring 15.9% so far in 2014 compared with 17.1% in the fourth quarter of 2013.
These data are based on more than 28,000 interviews with Americans from Jan. 2-Feb. 28, 2014, as part of the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. With only a few weeks remaining in the first quarter, the uninsured rate is on track to be the lowest quarterly level that Gallup and Healthways have measured since 2008.
And another "mini-update" out of Minnesota...up another 2,000 total in 3 days to 115,001+. Still assuming a 30/70 QHP/Medicaid split until they release detailed numbers, based on existing data, which brings MN up to 34,600 QHPs / 80,401 Medicaid.
ST. PAUL, Minn. — MNsure announced today an addition to their television campaign that highlights the March 31 deadline to enroll in a qualified health plan. More than 115,000 Minnesotans have enrolled through MNsure to find comprehensive, affordable coverage, and with only 21 days left of the open enrollment period, MNsure is reminding Minnesotans to take action so they do not incur a penalty.
While it's great to see an official press release instead of just the number on the website, and it's also great to see that the new number is 32,000 higher than 5 days ago, it's rather irritating and strange that nowhere in the press release do they break out the QHP/Medicaid numbers.
ALBANY (March 10, 2014) – NY State of Health (NYSOH), the State’s official health plan marketplace, reported that as of 9 a.m. today, 908,595 New Yorkers have completed their applications and 590,639 have enrolled for coverage since the launch of the Marketplace on October 1, 2013. More than 70 percent of those who have enrolled to date were uninsured at the time of application. Over the last week alone, enrollment has increased by more than 55,000.