Michigan

Michigan

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

Michigan's preliminary 2022 rate filings actually came out a solid month ago, but as noted above I'm way behind on my rate filing project this year:

Highlighting Michigan’s increasingly competitive health insurance market, the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) has reported that consumers will have more health plan options from an increased number of insurers on the Health Insurance Marketplace for the upcoming open enrollment period.

“As we look toward the end of the pandemic and beyond, it is critical that Michiganders are able to get the affordable, high quality health coverage they need for themselves and their families,” said DIFS Director Anita Fox. “Consumers will have more options to choose from when shopping for health insurance coverage on the Marketplace during open enrollment later this year.”

Michigan Flag

 

via the Michigan Dept. of Insurance & Financial Services:

DIFS Files Cease and Desist Order Against Health Care Sharing Ministry, Connected Businesses Operating in Michigan

(LANSING, MICH) The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) has issued a cease-and-desist order against a healthcare sharing ministry and two connected companies for allegedly acting in violation of the Michigan Insurance Code.

“Health care sharing ministries can have a role in fostering the health, fellowship, and sense of community for individuals of faith, but they must follow the requirements of the law,” said DIFS Director Anita Fox. “The DIFS investigation showed that the companies under this cease-and-desist order are essentially operating as unlicensed health insurance companies, in violation of the Insurance Code.”

Michigan

I've once again relaunched my project from last fall to track Medicaid enrollment (both standard and expansion alike) on a monthly basis for every state dating back to the ACA being signed into law.

For the various enrollment data, I'm using data from Medicaid.gov's Medicaid Enrollment Data Collected Through MBES reports. Unfortunately, they've only published enrollment data through December 2020. In some states I've been able to get more recent enrollment data from state websites and other sources.

Today I'm presenting Michigan. For enrollment data from January 2021 on, I'm relying on adjusted estimates based on raw data from the Michigan Dept. of Health & Human Services, especially their monthly "Green Book of Key Program Statistics".

Michigan

A few weeks ago I noted that my year-long tracking of COVID-19 cases and deaths along partisan lines has proven to be very much justified, as recent headlines in major news outs have proven:

Nearly half of Republicans say they don’t want a Covid vaccine, a big public health challenge.

But more than two in five Republicans said they would avoid getting vaccinated if possible, suggesting that President Biden has not succeeded in his effort to depoliticize the vaccines — and leaving open the question of whether the country will be able to achieve herd immunity without a stronger push from Republican leaders to bring their voters on board.

‘I’m still a zero’: Vaccine-resistant Republicans warn that their skepticism is worsening

Michigan

A few weeks ago I noted that my year-long tracking of COVID-19 cases and deaths along partisan lines has proven to be very much justified, as recent headlines in major news outs have proven:

Nearly half of Republicans say they don’t want a Covid vaccine, a big public health challenge.

But more than two in five Republicans said they would avoid getting vaccinated if possible, suggesting that President Biden has not succeeded in his effort to depoliticize the vaccines — and leaving open the question of whether the country will be able to achieve herd immunity without a stronger push from Republican leaders to bring their voters on board.

‘I’m still a zero’: Vaccine-resistant Republicans warn that their skepticism is worsening

Michigan

A week ago I noted that my year-long tracking of COVID-19 cases and deaths along partisan lines has proven to be very much justified, as recent headlines in major news outs have proven:

Nearly half of Republicans say they don’t want a Covid vaccine, a big public health challenge.

But more than two in five Republicans said they would avoid getting vaccinated if possible, suggesting that President Biden has not succeeded in his effort to depoliticize the vaccines — and leaving open the question of whether the country will be able to achieve herd immunity without a stronger push from Republican leaders to bring their voters on board.

‘I’m still a zero’: Vaccine-resistant Republicans warn that their skepticism is worsening

Michigan

As regular readers know, for over a year now, I've been tracking the spread of COVID-19 per capita case and death rates a) at the county (not just state) level and b) along partisan lines.

The most obvious example of this has been my weekly updated breakout of the RATIO between the case & death rates over time in "Blue Counties" (those won in 2016 by Hillary Clinton, later replaced by those won in 2020 by Joe Biden, by at least 6 points or more) vs. the rates in "Red Counties" (those won by Donald Trump in 2016, late replaced with 2020 results, by 6 points or more).

As of last week, that graph looked like this:

Michigan

It's no secret that as a) a lifetime Michigan resident and b) an openly activist Democrat, I'm a huge fan of Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer (I was even on a healthcare town hall panel with her back in 2017 during the Repeal/Replace debacle). Having said that, I'm still impressed with the announcement just put out by the MI Dept. of Insurance & Financial Services:

Michigan Insurers on HealthCare.Gov Provide Consumer Flexibility

(LANSING, MICH) Through an agreement announced today between Governor Gretchen Whitmer, the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS), and all nine of Michigan’s Marketplace insurers, Michiganders enrolled in a health plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace can now take advantage of expanded tax subsidies offered by the American Rescue Plan without having to restart their deductibles when they switch to another plan offered by their current insurer, and in some cases even if they choose a plan through another insurer.

I've noted before that enrollment in Michigan's ACA Medicaid expansion program, "Healthy Michigan", has risen sharply over the past year since the COVID-19 pandemic hit; it's up by over 1/3 since last February.

However, it's also worth noting that non-ACA Medicaid enrollment has also jumped significantly since the pandemic arrived. I've dug into data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid, the Kaiser Family Foundation and Michigan's Health Dept. archives and put together the graph below, showing that non-ACA Medicaid enrollment has risen from around 1.66 million Michiganders in February 2020 to over 1.92 million today, a 16% increase.

Combined, total Medicaid enrollment is up by around 21% to over 2.82 million as of April 2021.

I should also note that in addition to this, 267,000 Michiganders enrolled in ACA exchange coverage during the 2021 Open Enrollment Period, of which a good 90% (240,000)paid their first monthly premium based on past ACA data. At the time I noted that around 83% were subsidized, or perhaps 200,000.

I last updated my Michigan Medicaid expansion tracking back in January.At the time, I noted that enrollment in this ACA programhas increased dramatically here in Michigan since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, increasing from 673,000 in February 2020 to 853,000 as of January 2021, or nearly 27% in less than one year.

As of April 5th, the Healthy Michigan program (that's the branding of Michigan's ACA Medicaid expansion) notes 897,261 enrollees. That's a net increase of 224,000 Michiganders enrolled in the program since last February, or over 33%.

With this as backdrop, consider the timing of the following events:

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