Back in late January, I crunched the numbers on the total number of Americans who currently have healthcare coverage directly via the Affordable Care Act. This includes three categories: Exchange-based Qualified Health Plans (QHPs); the Basic Health Plan (BHP) progams in Minnesota and New York; and Medicaid Expansion in the 38 states (+DC) which had implemented it as of that point.

I concluded that the total numbers for each were roughly 15.4 million QHPs, 1.2 million BHPs and 23.5 million Medicaid expansion enrollees, or around 40.1 million people total.

Earlier this week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) confirmed my estimates and even came in slightly higher, at around 40.2 million. They put effectuated QHPs at 15.6 million and Medicaid expansion enrollment at around 23.4 million.

via the U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Services:

Administration policies helped increase coverage among younger adults, Latino individuals, American Indian/Alaska Native, and non-English speaking adults

Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a new report showing that Biden-Harris Administration efforts were linked to large gains in health insurance coverage of Americans between 2019 and 2021. The Biden-Harris Administration has made expanding access to health insurance and lowering health care costs for America’s families a top priority, and under its leadership, the national uninsured rate reached an all-time low early in 2022. The report, from the HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE), shows that larger gains in coverage occurred for demographic groups with higher historical uninsured rates, including younger adults, Latino individuals, American Indian/Alaska Native, and non-English speaking adults.


In the midst of all the data & stats from this morning's CMS report touting the most successful ACA Open Enrollment Period ever, I almost forgot another important related report which the Biden Administration is promoting as well:

This week, HHS’s office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) is also releasing a report analyzing new survey data that showed the uninsured rate fell in 2021 after the American Rescue Plan and outreach efforts took effect. According to the report, the uninsured rate for U.S. population was 8.9% for the third quarter of 2021 (July – September 2021), down from 10.3% for the last quarter of 2020 – corresponding to roughly 4.6 million more people with coverage over that time period. Coverage gains occurred among both children and working age adults, with the largest coverage gains for those with incomes under 200% of the poverty level (roughly $27,000 for a single adult or $56,000 for a family of four).


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.


This morning, Vox reporter Dylan Scott posted a story touting exclusive access to a new ASPE analysis which estimates nearly 7 million uninsured Americans who now qualify for a FREE ($0 premium) ACA health insurance policy, in large part thanks to the American Rescue Plan's expanded subsidies:

Roughly 29 million people currently living in the US lack health insurance. According to the new HHS estimates, about 6.8 million of them could now purchase an ACA plan with no monthly premium, and another 1.3 million could sign up for a health plan that costs less than $50 a month. Many of those people already qualified for free or low-cost coverage prior to the ARP, but based on the federal projections, the new law’s expansion of the ACA made an additional 2 million Americans eligible for free or cheap coverage.

Over the past few weeks,I've posted partial 2018 Open Enrollment Period demographic data from Connecticut, Idaho, Maryland, New York and Washington State. Still missing are final wrap-up reports from the other 7 state-based well as The Big One: The official report from the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE).

The 2014 ASPE report was released on May 1st, 2014...just 17 days after the first, tumultuous 2014 Open Enrollment Period ended (only 12 days, really, since the report actually ran through April 19th, 2014 even though the "overtime" period technically ended on April 15th).

A couple of weeks ago, I noted that the final, official ASPE report for the 2016 Open Enrollment Period was running quite a bit later than it did the first two years: In 2014 it was released either 12 or 16 days after open enrollment ended (OE1 ended on 4/15 but the report covered an additional 4 days), while last year it was also released 16 days after the end of the 2015 season.

For whatever reason, it took a full 40 days for the ASPE report to be released this year, but whatever; let's dig in!

First, it's worth remembering that the HHS Dept. included 1 extra day this year (Feb. 1st) for as well as 4 of the state exchanges to account for some "in line by midnight" enrollees:

(note: I'm live updating as I type this stuff, so keep checking back, I'll be adding more updates/analysis over the next hour)

Wow! OK, I'm back from my kid's field trip (nature center; they learned about how animals handle the winter via hibernation, migration & adaptation...learned about fossils...went on the nature trail to look for animal tracks...and even dissected owl pellets, hooray!!). Of all the days to miss a major HHS/CMS conference call, this was a big one. I'm furiously poring over the HHS Dept's ASPE January Enrollment Report  which, as I expected this morning, was just released less than two hours ago.