Here’s where things are.
Briefly, my best guess is less than a hundred thousand folks have enrolled in insurance via the Exchanges so far. That’s based on reports I’ve seen from several sources identified below.
And, there are a lot of health plans participating, with 2/3 of states offering 4 or more health plans, each with multiple benefit plans.
- There’s been very heavy traffic on the Exchanges, overloading some servers and leading to delays in accessing Exchanges. Things appear to be improving.
- About 7 million folks accessed the feds’ Exchange – and that’s as of Wednesday night.
- Enrollment is pretty spotty, with most accessing the Exchanges doing more exploring than enrolling. Given the requirement to pay the first month’s premium within 30 days of enrollment, that’s not surprising as coverage doesn’t start till January 1. Still, on day one:
- some 6900 signed up in Kentucky;
- around 7000 created accounts in Colorado and 18,000 in Nevada; 7700 in California
- There’s been a good bit of spin about issues, with cherry-picking of data by opponents and no data about enrollment forthcoming from the Feds as of yet.
Those shopping for coverage are finding lots of options, as 2/3 of the states have four or more health plans selling thru the Exchanges, while eleven of the most populous states have ten or more plans participating.
Of course, PPACA implementation started back in 2010, with the elimination of lifetime caps on medical expenses, extension of coverage to dependents up to age 26, increased reimbursement for primary care under Medicare and other interim actions.
What does this mean for you?
Not surprisingly, there’s far more shopping than buying, and a raft of technical and capacity problems on the Exchange servers. As the tech issues get fixed, we’ll see more traffic and more enrollees, especially in late November.
Until then this will quickly become yesterday’s news.