On Tuesday February 25th, the health care administration announced that enrollment in the federal exchange has reach 4 million applicants. After a rocky start due to website technical issues and delays, the number of participants has steadily increased. In February, there were about 700,000 people who signed up for the exchange. Still, it is unclear how many of the enrollees have actually paid for their first month’s premiums.
Originally, the White House intended to have 7 million people enrolled on the exchange by March 31st. Their goal was to have at least 2.7 of the enrollees be young and healthy participants. The healthy participants enable the cost of coverage to decrease for the other enrollees so their participation is critical to the success of the program. There is little information currently on how many of the 4 million participants are the “younger healthier” individuals that the Obamacare administration is hoping for.
Many experts also predict that there will be an increase in the number of applicants attempting to enroll prior to the March 31st deadline. Hopefully, the website is able to accommodate this surge in applications unlike when the site first went live in October. Outreach is currently taking place to entice more families to enroll and remind people who haven’t enrolled of the potential penalties they’ll face. Families of four who make less than four times the federal poverty levl (approximately $94,000) may qualify for a government subsidy to alleviate some of the premium costs. However, every individual who is not covered by April 1st, could face a fine of $95 a year of 1% of their annual income.
For more information about the exchange, please feel free to email us with any questions.