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Exchange activity slows

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The number of people who selected private “qualified health plans” (QHPs) through the new public health insurance exchanges fell 44 percent between December and January, to about 1.1 million.

The number who got through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) QHP eligibility determination process fell 48 percent, to 2.1 million.

The number of completed applications received fell 39 percent, to about 2.1 million.

But the total number of people who have selected QHPs increased to 3.3 million as of Feb. 1, up from 2.2 million on Dec. 28, according to analysis of the latest U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) exchange activity statistics.

The total number of people who had completed the QHP eligibility determination process has increased to 7.3 million, from 5.1 million.

HHS has made analyzing month-to-month changes difficult by publishing only cumulative statistics. LifeHealthPro came up with monthly figures by subtracting the December activity numbers from the January numbers and the November numbers from the December numbers.

HHS runs some of the PPACA exchanges and states run others.

The number of people who picked QHPs in January fell 36 percent to 743,158 at the federal exchanges, and 54 percent at the state-based exchanges, to 401,913.

In California, the state with the state-based exchange with the most QHP plan selectors, the number of selectors increased to 728,086, from 498,784.

In Florida, the HHS exchange state with the most QHP selectors, the number of selectors increased to 296,892, from 158,030. 

In Texas, the number of QHP selectors increased to 207,546, from 118,532.

Other states with more than 100,000 QHP selectors include New York on the state-based exchange list and Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina and Pennsylvania on the HHS exchange list.

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