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Obamacare Exchanges Won't Hit Enrollment Targets

The Dept. of Health and Human Services released its latest enrollment report for the Obamacare exchanges.  According to the report, 364,682 selected a plan among all the exchanges.  137,204 selected plans in the federal exchanges and 227,478 selected plans on state exchanges.

Those numbers means that the selection of plans increased in November compared to October.  But it also means the exchanges are on track to fall short of the enrollment targets of 3,923,000 for the federal exchanges and 7,066,000 for all exchanges.

In the table below I’ve taken the daily rate of enrollment plan selection for all exchanges in November and assumed they continued through March 31.  I also assumed that the rate quadruples in the two weeks prior to Dec. 23 the deadline for purchasing a plan that begins coverage on Jan.1   I also assumed that the rate quadruples in the two weeks before March 31 when the open enrollment period ends.   I then applied the rates to both the federal exchanges and all exchanges.

The federal exchanges fall about 44% short of the enrollment target and all exchanges fall about 43% short.  The only question is whether the shortfall will be distributed evenly among all age groups?  Probably not.  In states where we have information, such as Colorado, Kentucky, and California, enrollment of 18-34-year-olds are falling far short of 35% rate that the Obama Administration estimate it needs.

Death spiral, here we come.

photo: iStockPhoto

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