Shorter open enrollment period, much less outreach funding, less convenient online access all lead to dire predictions.
In spite of surveys indicating 30 percent of Americans were unaware of the open enrollment for the ACA market place record numbers of people are signing up.
Through the first 18 days, nearly 2.3 million people have signed up for insurance coverage through Affordable Care Act exchanges, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, a number that has outpaced the same period under former President Barack Obama.
Quoted in The Hill, Larry Levitt, a health policy expert at the Kaiser Family Foundation, said enrollment is up significantly on a daily basis, but cautioned against drawing conclusions from the early numbers.
But there are a lot fewer days” in the open enrollment period, he said. “It’s really hard to generalize from these early enrollment numbers.
Levitt said that in past years there were two surges: one around Dec. 15, when consumers could buy coverage effective Jan. 1; and one around Jan. 31, at the very end of open enrollment.
The deadline surge this year would need to be “quite large” in order to maintain steady enrollment from previous years, he added.
Katherine Hempstead, who directs coverage programs at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation:
There could be a fear factor, people going out and enrolling before more changes happen. The negative publicity has increased awareness a bit.
Read the story in The Hill