Health Care

It’s Official: Obamacare Enrollment Is Super Low

A woman looks at the insurance exchange internet site October 1, 2013 in Washington, DC. US President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare as it is commonly called, passed in March 2010, went into effect Tuesday at 8am EST. Heavy Internet traffic and system problems plagued the launch of the new health insurance exchanges Tuesday morning. Consumers attempting to log on were met with an error message early Tuesday due to an overload of Internet traffic. AFP PHOTO / Karen BLEIER 
National Journal
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Sam Baker
Nov. 13, 2013, 10:30 a.m.

Roughly 100,000 people en­rolled in health in­sur­ance through Obama­care last month — far short of the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s goal.

The Health and Hu­man Ser­vices De­part­ment said 106,185 people have suc­cess­fully ap­plied for and chosen private in­sur­ance through the health care law’s new mar­ket­places. That total is only about 20 per­cent of the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s ini­tial en­roll­ment tar­get for Oc­to­ber, the first month in which con­sumers were able to sign up for cov­er­age.

Of­fi­cials have long ac­know­ledged they would fall short of that tar­get be­cause of the prob­lems sur­round­ing Health­, the prob­lem-plagued web­site that handles en­roll­ment for 36 states.

Health­ has per­formed even worse than ex­pec­ted. Few­er than 27,000 people se­lec­ted a plan through the web­site, com­pared with roughly 79,000 who picked a plan through the 15 state-based in­sur­ance ex­changes. Un­of­fi­cial es­tim­ates leaked earli­er this week sug­ges­ted the fed­er­al web­site had done slightly bet­ter.

An­oth­er 396,000 people have been ap­proved for Medi­caid be­ne­fits, ac­cord­ing to HHS.


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