COVID-19

A couple of weeks ago, one of my COVID "partisan lean" graphs was cited by David Leonhardt of the New York Times. This paragraph in question gained plenty of attention, and ended up being referenced by Nicole Wallace on Deadline: White House; Morning Joe; Raw Story and Paul Waldman of the Washington Post:

Since Delta began circulating widely in the U.S., Covid has exacted a horrific death toll on red America: In counties where Donald Trump received at least 70 percent of the vote, the virus has killed about 47 out of every 100,000 people since the end of June, according to Charles Gaba, a health care analyst. In counties where Trump won less than 32 percent of the vote, the number is about 10 out of 100,000.

New Hampshire

The good news about New Hampshire's health insurance market is that they're the only state without its own ACA exchange which produces publicly-accessible monthly reports on individual on-exchange market enrollment. The bad news is that they don't seem to publish the actual rate filings in an easy-to-read format, which means I'm left with the federal rate review website. The problem with that is the rate filings are mostly heavily redacted, making it impossible to get the total enrollment data.

As a result, I only have on-exchange enrollment numbers for the individual market and no enrollment data for five of the six small group market carriers in New Hampshire. For the individual market, it looks like the off-exchange market only has around 7,000 enrollees, since nearly 48,000 are on-exchange.

Assuming similar ratios for the off-exchange market, that's a weighted average increase of 3.2%; if not, the unweighted average increase is just under 5.0%.

Nevada

via the Nevada Insurance Dept:

Division of Insurance announces approved health insurance plans and rates for the individual health insurance market

October 1, 2021

  • Division announces approved health insurance plans and rates for the individual health insurance market
  • Nevada Consumers encouraged to view and compare health insurance plans and rates for 2022

Carson City, NV – In preparation for Open Enrollment next month, the Nevada Division of Insurance has made public the approved health insurance rates for consumers who shop on the individual health insurance market, both on and off the Silver State Health Insurance Exchange (Exchange), which is the state agency that oversees and connects eligible Nevada residents to affordable health and dental plans through Nevada Health Link.

Connect for Health Colorado Logo

via Connect for Health Colorado:

Losing Free COBRA Premiums or Job Health Insurance? You Can Still Enroll in Health Coverage for the Last Few Months of 2021

  • Residents with a Qualifying Event Have Options to Get Covered

DENVER – Thousands of Coloradans will lose free COBRA premiums at the end of the month and may need other affordable coverage options. Through the American Rescue Plan Act, which passed earlier this year, many people were able to receive free COBRA premiums through September 30. Connect for Health Colorado, the state’s health insurance marketplace, is reminding residents that they can still sign up for a health insurance plan for the remainder of the year if they experience a Qualifying Life Event, such as losing free COBRA premiums this month or losing job health insurance.

COVID-19 Vaccine

Methodology reminders, including some important updates:

  • I go by FULLY vaccinated residents only (defined as 2 doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine).
  • I base my percentages on the total population, as opposed to adults only or those over 11 years old.
  • The 5 major U.S. territories don't vote for President in the general election, preventing me from displaying them in the main graph, but I have them listed down the right side.
COVID-19

I promise this is the last one of these I'll post this week!

The first known U.S. case of COVID-19 has been confirmed to have occurred sometime in December 2019 (the first known U.S. death was on February 6th, 2020).

Assuming the first case was ~December 15th or so, it was roughly 325 days from then until the Presidential Election on November 3rd, 2020, or a little under 11 months.

It's been 327 days from Election Day through September 26, 2021.

In other words, almost exactly as much time has passed in the post-election phase of the COVID pandemic as in the pre-election phase.

COVID-19

A month or so ago I was inspired by a fellow wonk named Christopher Ingraham of The Why Axis to plot out COVID vaccinations, cases and deaths via bar graphs instead of my usual scatter plot graphs.

This morning my most recent update of this analysis was linked to by David Leonhardt of the New York Times.

Today I'm posting updated versions of all three, with some important data/methodology updates:

Nebraska

Nebraska doesn't even bother listing indy/small group plan rate filings on their own insurance department website...the link goes directly to the federal Rate Review database. The problem with this is that very few filings here are unredacted, which means it's difficult to acquire the policy enrollees for many carriers needed to run a weighted average.

Fortunately, Nebraska has only 3 carriers for 2022...one of which is brand new to the state (Oscar Health), and of the other two, Medica's filing summary does include an exact number of enrollees. That leaves just Bright Health, and since I know (roughly) how many enrollees are in Nebraska's overall indy market, voila: 8.6% average rate increases.

On the other hand, I don't have the enrollment for any of the 4 Small Group market carriers. It also looks like UnitedHealthcare is pulling out of the NE sm. group market, but it might just be that the federal database doesn't have them listed yet (I doubt this since it's so close to the Open Enrollment Period). The unweighted average rate change is a 2.1% reduction:

Montana

See how simple that was, other state health insurance carriers?

Seriously, if every state displayed their annual rate filing data in as simple and clear-cut a fashion as Montana does, I'd be a much happier man. Admittedly, several others do, but the trickiest issue is usually getting the estimated enrollment numbers.

In any event, not much to say about Montana's ACA markets in 2022: No new carriers are jumping in, no current ones are dropping out, and the rate changes are pretty straightforward: +0.5% on the individual market, +5.2% on the small group market.

Georgia

Georgia's health department doesn't publish their annual rate filings publicly, but they don't hide them either; I was able to acquire pretty much everything via a simple FOIA request which was responded to within a few hours of my asking.

There's several important developments happening in Georgia this year; I'll let Louise Norris explain:

As of 2021, there are six insurers that offer exchange plans in Georgia. Five additional insurers plan to join them for 2022: Friday Health Plans, Bright Health, Aetna, UnitedHealthcare, and Cigna (Aetna, UHC, and Cigna all participated in Georgia’s exchange previously, but left at the end of 2016).

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