Web brokers: We piped in 13% of HHS exchanges' active enrollees

Web broker exchange volume doubled between 2014 and 2015, AWHIB says. Web broker exchange volume doubled between 2014 and 2015, AWHIB says.

Private Web brokers have helped 896,800 Americans buy, or actively renew, federal health insurance exchange coverage for 2015, according to the Association of Web-based Health Insurance Brokers (AWHIB).

Brokers connect with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) public exchange system through the Web formed AWHIB in November.

See also: HealthCare.gov attracts more Web brokers

AWHIB relies on voluntary data submissions from its member companies. The new report covers only the business member companies placed in states with PPACA exchanges run by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

The report leaves out information about the member companies' sales of plans from state-based exchanges, such as Covered California or MNsure. It also leaves out information about brick-and-mortar brokers' sales of HHS exchange plans or state-based exchange plans.

The report does show that AWHIB members' account for a large share of the HHS-run exchanges' 2015 enrollment activity.

The Web brokers served about 13 percent of the 7 million people who bought new coverage through the HHS exchanges, or who actively shopped for coverage when they renewed existing HHS exchange coverage, according to AWHIB.

The Web brokers' share of total HHS exchange enrollment and active renewal activity averaged 13 percent during the regular open enrollment period, which lasted from Nov. 15 to Feb. 15.

Web brokers' share of the HHS exchange action increased to about 20 percent during a broad tax-related special enrollment period (SEP) that lasted from March 15 to April 30. HHS offered the tax SEP to taxpayers who said they first learned about the new PPACA tax penalty on the uninsured when they filed their 2014 taxes.

See also: PPACA nap period: Can you get special?

AWHIB members helped 30,100 of the 147,000 people who bought HHS exchange coverage during the tax SEP.

Correction: The number of people AWHIB members helped was described incorrectly in an earlier version of this article. The total number is 896,800.

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