KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

HHS Enrollment Figures Indicate Sign-Ups Even In States Where Officials Have Opposed The Health Law

News outlets offer a sampling of state-specific health plan enrollment numbers. Even Oregon, with its non-working exchange, signed up more than 33,000 people.

Health News Florida: FL A Leader In Enrollment
Despite state officials' opposition to the Affordable Care Act and the relative scarcity of helpers available, Floridians are finding their way to and signing up for plans. Through the end of January, according to a federal report released Wednesday, nearly 300,000 Floridians had selected a plan through the federal Health Insurance Marketplace (Gentry, 2/13).

The Des Moines Register: Obamacare Adds 4,300 Iowans In January
Nearly 4,300 Iowans signed up for private health insurance in January via the Obamacare website, a new federal report shows. The results were not as dramatic as those seen in December, when more than 6,000 Iowans used the system to select private policies. But the new numbers show continued progress in fixing the website, whose October launch was crippled by technical problems (Leys, 2/12).

The Texas Tribune: Obamacare Enrollment Continues Steady Climb
Enrollment in the federal health insurance marketplace continued to steadily climb in January, according to data the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released Wednesday. In January, another 89,500 Texans selected a health plan on the insurance marketplace created by the Affordable Care Act, the department reported (Aaronson, 2/12).

The Associated Press: Insurance Exchange Sign-Ups Break 100K Mark In Pa.
More than 123,000 Pennsylvanians have selected an insurance plan under the new federal health care law as troubles with the gateway website have subsided, the U.S. government said Wednesday, although tens of thousands more who might be eligible for Medicaid were suspended in limbo. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a report with the figures for all states through Jan. 31. National numbers showed that nearly 3.3 million people signed up for health insurance from Oct. 1 through Feb. 1. The government's initial target was 7 million by the end of March (Levy, 2/12).

The Oregonian: Cover Oregon Enrollment Climbs Despite Non-Working Exchange
Oregon's health insurance exchange, Cover Oregon, signed up more than 33,000 people for commercial health insurance in the individual insurance market by Feb. 1, according to a new federal report. The figure means that despite long delays for some, and numerous complaints about missing applications and bureaucratic nightmares, the state is still managing to hold its own with states that have working exchange websites. Oregon has done so using a manual enrollment system that employs more than 400 temporary and other workers to process paper and electronic applications (Budnick, 2/12).

Georgia Health News: State’s Exchange Enrollees Now Exceed 100,000
The number of Georgians signed up for health coverage in the insurance exchange has topped 100,000, according to a federal report released Wednesday. The Georgia enrollment of 101,276 through January lags behind that of two other states using the federal exchange that have similar-sized populations – North Carolina’s 160,161 and Michigan’s 112,013. Still, the new figure represents a 73 percent jump from Georgia’s October-through-December total of 58,611 signing up. And it surpasses that of two states with slightly larger populations, Ohio and Illinois (Miller, 2/12).

The Chicago Sun-Times: 88,000 In Illinois Select Health Plan Under Affordable Care Act
More than 88,000 Illinois residents have selected a health insurance plan created by President Barack Obama’s health plan, according to enrollment numbers that came out six weeks before the deadline to enroll this year. Illinois’ previous total, released in January, was 61,111 people who had selected a plan created by the Affordable Care Act between Oct. 1 and Dec. 28. The new figures, released Wednesday, are to Feb. 1. Of the 88,602 state residents who got a plan, 75 percent of those qualified for tax credits, according to the federal report (Thomas, 2/12).

The Richmond Times-Dispatch: Nearly 30K Sign Up For Health Insurance In January
Almost 30,000 Virginians enrolled in health insurance plans through the new federal marketplace in January, an increase of two-thirds over sign-ups in the difficult first three months of the program. More than 1.1 million people enrolled in federal and state marketplaces across the country last month, although enrollment is uneven among the states, according to numbers released Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Total enrollment through the end of January was 74,199 in Virginia — compared with 44,676 in the first three months of the program — with a total of 3.3 million across the country (Martz, 2/13).

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