Open enrollment has ended, but many sought coverage at the last minute
There has been a swell in activity among those looking for health insurance coverage through state-based exchanges on the last day of the open enrollment period. Open enrollment for exchanges ended on February 15, and many people flocked to HealthCare.gov and visited the physical office of their exchanges in order to acquire coverage. With the open enrollment period now over, consumers will not be able to find health insurance coverage through exchanges, apart from certain circumstances.
Texas experiences a swell in activity from those still looking for insurance coverage
In Texas, consumers swarmed to enrollment centers before the open enrollment deadline. Enrollment SA, a coalition of health care professionals and government agencies, helped keep three enrollment centers open so that people could find the health insurance coverage that they needed. In San Antonio, Texas, these centers helped enroll more than 70 families into the state’s insurance exchange. Enroll America, another group that assists with enrollment into exchanges, noted that fewer people sought coverage through the Texas exchange than last year.
More than 969,000 people enrolled in state’s health insurance exchange
During the last open enrollment period, approximately 733,000 people signed up for insurance coverage through the Texas exchange. Many people had reported problems with the enrollment process, but these issues have been resolved ahead of the latest open enrollment period. This year, the exchange’s enrollment numbers reached 969,461, with the majority of those that had purchased coverage last year deciding to renew their policies for 2015. Those that were unable to find coverage through the exchange were able to find it from the state’s Medicaid program.
Federal subsidies help make coverage more attractive
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the majority of those signing up for coverage through health insurance exchanges are eligible for federal subsidies. These subsidies are meant to offset the cost of insurance, making it more accessible to a wider range of consumers. The availability of these subsidies has been a major selling point for states trying to attract consumers to their insurance exchanges.