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Obamacare sees enrollment spike

By Crissinda Ponder · Bankrate.com
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Posted: 1 pm ET

Nearly 365,000 Americans selected health insurance plans through the Obamacare exchanges during the first two months of open enrollment, the Obama administration reported Wednesday.

During the month of November, the number of people who selected a plan through HealthCare.gov -- the federal website that handles enrollment for 36 states -- more than quadrupled to approximately 110,410, up from a mere 26,794 in October.

The enrollment jump comes less than two weeks after the administration announced that the problem-plagued site was fixed and working for the vast majority of users.

"Evidence of the technical improvements to HealthCare.gov can be seen in the enrollment numbers," secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, said in a statement.

Just hours ahead of her testimony before House subcommittee members on the Hill, Sebelius also announced in a blog post Wednesday that HHS Inspector General Dan Levinson will be conducting an internal review of the federal website and determining exactly what caused its botched rollout.

The number of Americans who selected a health insurance plan through the state-based exchanges increased to a combined total of 227,478 for the months of October and November, the HHS report said. Enrollment numbers for both the federal and state marketplaces include those who have purchased a plan and those who have not yet paid a premium.

Overall, the HHS said 1.9 million customers made it through a "critical step" in the enrollment process -- eligibility determination -- but have not selected a plan. Additionally, more than 800,000 were determined eligible for Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program, aka CHIP.

Even with the Obamacare enrollment surge, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, maintains that the landmark health law "continues to wreak havoc on American families, small businesses and our economy."

"I think when we get to Jan. 1, it'll be clear that more Americans will have lost their health insurance than will sign up under the new Obamacare policies," Boehner said at a press conference Wednesday.

To date, 39.1 million people have visited the federal and state websites, according to the HHS. Open enrollment ends March 31, 2014.

Follow me on Twitter: @CrissiPonder.

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1 Comment
Reality
December 13, 2013 at 4:31 pm

Wow- Millions get disrupted, and a fraction gets insurance. How can anyone with a rational mind call this a success. Another example of government thinking they know better. When will we learn to just say NO. Success = more with insurance than messed up? What an absolute failure. Is the next health care approval rating going to be more survived than died??? Please... please... government get out of my health care and let me handle it!!