Obama Administration Falls Well Short of Obamacare Sign-Up Goal

Posted: Dec 11, 2013 9:50 AM

A new report from President Obama's Department of Health and Human Services details that 365,000 people combined [pdf] have "selected" plans on the federal and state Obamacare marketplaces. It'll take almost 3 million sign-ups in the month of December to hit the Obama Administration's stated goal of signing up 3.3 million people by the end of 2013.

The total Obamacare signups reported by HHS is still short of what was projected to be a "low target" for October alone.

HHS is still issuing reports using the terminology "selected plans" rather than actual enrollments because many of those people who have managed to successfully "select" plans have not actually paid for their plans yet. Many premiums aren't due until just before the plans go into effect, but if people don't actually submit payment when it's due, the reported number will fall.

Meanwhile, millions of Americans have had their policies cancelled. While hard data is hard to come by here, over 300,000 insurance policies were cancelled in Florida, nearly 800,000 policies were cancelled in New Jersey, and 300,000 in California. In contrast, up to this point, nearly 18,000 have "selected" a plan in Florida, 3,200 have "selected" a plan in New Jersey, and 107,000 have "selected" a plan in California.

Obamacare sign-ups have not kept pace with the Obama Administration's goals, and they haven't kept pace with the number of people who have found themselves uninsured due to Obamacare's new mandates.

Back-end problems have plagued and continue to plague the site. Many sign-ups are affected by "834 errors," in which information is improperly conveyed to the private insureres after a sign-up happens. A CMS spokesman said that the only way to tell if an enrollee has actually obtained insurance is by contacting the insurance company.

Everyone who thinks they've obtained insurance needs to contact their insurer to actually confirm it due to the website's continued problems.

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