Open enrollment under the Affordable Care Act (ACA-Obamacare) continues this week. People can get started or renew their policy by going to HealthCare.gov.

HHS reported new enrollees of 196,005 for the second week of open enrollment (November 3 through November 9). Total new enrollments since November 1, 2019, is 244,000. When the new enrollments are combined with customers renewing their health insurance, the total is 932,049 since November 1, 2019.

The weekly figures posted by HHS includes only the national exchange which serves 38 states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. The remaining states have their own health insurance exchange. Under the ACA, states can choose whether to use their own system or rely on the federal government. The total users of the federal website HealthCare.gov have now reached 3,484,436 for this year.

Last month the Centers on Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in HHS indicated that health insurance premiums for 2020 would decrease by an average of 4 percent. At the same time, just 12 percent of ACA customers will be living in counties that will only have one insurer providing coverage. Additionally, 20 more issuers will participate in states that use the Federal Health Insurance Exchange platform in 2020, bringing the total to 175 issuers compared to 132 in 2018.

Six states experienced double-digit percentage declines in average silver plan premiums including, Delaware (20%), Nebraska (15%), North Dakota (15 %), Montana (14%), Oklahoma (14%), and Utah (10%). The figures are based on the most common type of health insurance policy purchased, the third-highest benefit package (silver option) and comparing what a 27-year-old single person would pay and what a family of four would pay.

About the Author:

John Sciamanna is CWLA's Vice President of Public Policy.

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