The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has announced that, after the third open enrollment period that ended January 31, 2016, a total of 12.7 million Americans have obtained health insurance coverage for 2016 through the Affordable Care Act. According to HHS,
- 9.6 million Americans used the federal marketplace HealthCare.gov platform and 3.1 million selected a plan through State-based Marketplaces.
- About 7 in 10 consumers with 2015 coverage came back to the federal marketplace HealthCare.gov and actively selected a plan for 2016. Last year, about half of returning consumers actively selected a plan.
- 4 million new people enrolled in coverage in HealthCare.gov states. Of the 9.6 million consumers who got coverage through HealthCare.gov for 2016, about 42 percent were new to the federal marketplace.
- Nearly 400,000 people signed up for New York’s new Basic Health Program, along with about 33,000 people who signed up for Minnesota’s Basic Health Program, during this open enrollment; these additional covered individuals are not included in the 12.7 million figure. Basic Health Programs are state based programs supported by the Affordable Care Act that provide health insurance coverage to low income individuals who would generally otherwise be eligible for qualified health plans.
HHS also reported that the average wait time for 14.5 million calls to the federal marketplace during this third open enrollment period was 10 minutes and 31 seconds (and only 26 seconds for the 939,000 calls made in Spanish). Additional details about enrollments by state and designated market areas are available in HHS’ final open enrollment weekly snapshot.
HHS has produced a video narrated by HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell announcing these milestones: