Obamacare Enrollment Spikes During Early Sign-Up Period

Fewer than one in ten Americans gets their health insurance through the individual market (KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images).

A record number of Americans signed up for Obamacare during the first few days of open enrollment compared to last year.

Administration sources confirmed to The Hill that Obamacare enrollment surged despite fears from Democrats that Obamacare enrolment would fall due to the Trump administration’s’ cutbacks in outreach and advertising.

On November 1, the first day of enrollment, more than 200,000 Americans enrolled in an Obamacare plan, which is more than double last year when only 100,000 citizens purchased health insurance through the Obamacare exchanges. One million Americans visited healthcare.gov, compared to 750,000 in 2016.

Early enrollments typically denote Americans who renew their Obamacare health insurance coverage, rather than new enrollees, who tend to sign up later during the enrollment period.

Standard & Poor’s forecasted that Obamacare enrollment could drop as much as 1.6 million Americans, compared to last year’s total enrollment of 12.2 enrollees. The enrollment period will be far shorter than last year, will ending December 15.

A spokesman from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) said, “The first few days of Open Enrollment for the Federal Health Insurance Exchange went smoothly. The website performed optimally and consumers easily accessed enrollment tools to compare plans and prices.”

The Donald Trump administration cut the Obamacare outreach program by 90 percent.

Acting Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Eric Hargan said last week that he wanted to make the sign-up period “as consumer friendly as possible.”

In the wake of Republican leadership’s inability to repeal Obamacare twice, President Donald Trump took action to help Americans who cannot afford health insurance.

In October, Trump signed an executive order to expand more affordable health insurance options. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) praised the order as “the biggest free-market reform in a generation.”

Trump reportedly will sign an executive order to help Americans who cannot afford the Obamacare individual insurance fine if they cannot maintain purchase insurance.


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