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HealthCare.gov Continues to Report Strong Renewals

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HealthCare.gov was better at holding on to existing customers than at attracting new customers during the second week of the open enrollment period for 2021 individual major medical coverage.

Renewals increased to 633,457, up 13% from the total for the second week of the open enrollment period for 2020 coverage.

The number of people who were new to HealthCare.gov who selected plans fell 13%, to 170,284.

Many applications submitted through HealthCare.gov are for coverage for more than one person. The applications submitted for the second week of the open enrollment period were for coverage for about 1.2 million people.

Officials from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services put those figures in an open enrollment period snapshot report for the week ending Nov. 4.

Resources

  • A copy of the second CMS HealthCare.gov 2021 open enrollment period snapshot report is available here.
  • An individual major medical open enrollment period preview article is available here.

HealthCare.gov is running Affordable Care Act (ACA) public exchange programs, or web-based supermarkets for private health insurance, for the residents of 36 states.

Fourteen states and the District of Columbia run their own ACA exchange programs.

Consumers can use ACA exchange programs to apply for ACA premium tax credit subsidies as well as to buy coverage.

ACA exchange programs typically report on the number of people who selected plans, rather than sales, because the programs record a sale only when an individual “effectuates” the coverage by sending in a payment. In the past, about 85% of the people who have signed up for plans have effectuated their coverage.

ACA exchange programs use the open enrollment period system, or limits on when people can buy coverage without having what the government classifies as a reason to be shopping for coverage, in an effort to persuade younger, healthier people to buy and pay for coverage, by exposing “free riders” to the risk that they could get sick, with no way to buy coverage, if they fail to stay covered year round.

In HealthCare.gov states, including Florida and Texas, the open enrollment period began Nov. 1 and is set to run until Dec. 15.

Most of the jurisdictions with locally run exchange programs began their open enrollment periods for 2021 coverage Nov. 1, but many are using later open enrollment period ending dates.

— Read ACA Exchange System Keeps Growing in Its Core Stateson ThinkAdvisor.

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