This is the fifth in a series of issue briefs highlighting national and state-level enrollment-related information for the Health Insurance Marketplace (Marketplace hereafter).1 This brief includes data for states that are implementing their own Marketplaces (also known as State-Based Marketplaces or SBMs), and states with Marketplaces that are supported by or fully run by the Department of Health and Human Services (including those run in partnership with states, also known as the Federally-facilitated Marketplace or FFM).
This brief also includes updated data on the characteristics of persons who have selected a Marketplace plan (by gender, age, and financial assistance status) and the plans that they have selected (by metal level); as well as additional data on the characteristics of people who have selected plans in the FFM and the plans they have selected. (Detailed state-level tables can be found in Appendix C, and in the Addendum to the March Marketplace Enrollment Report).2
Cumulative enrollment-related activity during the first five months (10-1-13 to 3-1-14) of the initial open enrollment period is reported for several metrics, including: the number of visits to the Marketplace websites, the number of calls to the Marketplace call centers, the number of persons who have been determined or assessed eligible by the Marketplaces for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP),3 and the number of persons who have selected a plan through the Marketplace. This report features cumulative data for the five-month period because some people apply, shop, and select a plan across monthly reporting periods.
The cumulative number of individuals that have selected a Marketplace plan between 10-1-13 and 3-1-14 (including those who have paid a premium and those who have not yet paid a premium) is more than 4.2 million.
Figure 1 and Table 1 show that, consistent with expectations,4 the proportion of young adults (ages 18 to 34) who have selected a Marketplace plan through the SBMs and FFM has remained strong. Young adults continued to account for 27 percent of the Marketplace plan selections during the fifth month, which was consistent with their share of plan selections during the fourth month (27 percent) and 3 percentage points higher than their share of plan selections during the first three months (24 percent). Meanwhile, the proportion of older adults (ages 35 and over) selecting a Marketplace plan has continued to decrease (from 70 percent during the first three months to 67 percent during the fifth month).
Trends in the Age Distribution of Individuals Who Have Selected a Marketplace Plan, 10-1-13 to 3-1-14
The proportion of young adults (ages 18-34) selecting a Marketplace plan (27%) remained constant during the fifth month of the initial open enrollment period, while the proportion of older adults (35 & over) selecting a Marketplace plan continued to decrease
Notes: Represents cumulative monthly data on the number of unique individuals who have been determined eligible to enroll ina Marketplace plan through the SBMs and FFM, and have selected a plan (with or without the first premium payment having been received by the issuer). The percent distribution excludes plan selections where the age is unknown. During the first 3 months, 2.2 million individuals selected a plan; during the 4thmonth, 1.1 million selected a plan; and during the 5th month, 0.9 million selected a plan, for a total of 4.2 million Marketplace plan selections for 10-1-13 to 3-1-14.
Source: Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, as of 3-7-2014.
Note: These percentages are based on the total number of plan selections for which the applicable data are available, excluding plan selections with unknown data for age. (Source: Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, as of 3-7-2014.)
There was a 29 percent increase in the cumulative number of individuals who have selected a Marketplace plan during the month of February.
While the total number of new Marketplace plan selections was slightly lower in February when compared with the previous month of January (942,000 versus 1,146,000, respectively), the rate of Marketplace plan selections is expected to increase as the March 31, 2014 end of the initial open enrollment period approaches.
1 The previous Marketplace enrollment reports can be accessed at http://www.aspe.hhs.gov/health/reports/2012/ACA-Research/index.cfm.
2 The Addendum to the March Enrollment Report is available at http://aspe.hhs.gov/health/reports/2014/MarketPlaceEnrollment/Mar2014/ib_2014Mar_enrollAddendum.pdf.
3 Data related to Medicaid and CHIP eligibility in this report are based on applications submitted through the Marketplaces. October through January data based on applications submitted through state Medicaid/CHIP agencies were released by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services in a separate report, “Medicaid & CHIP: January 2014 Monthly Applications and Eligibility Determinations Report, February 28, 2014,” which can be accessed at http://www.medicaid.gov/AffordableCareAct/Medicaid-Moving-Forward-2014/Downloads/January-2014-Enrollment-Report.pdf. Comparable February 2014 enrollment data based on applications submitted through state Medicaid/CHIP agencies will be released in a subsequent report.
4 The general expectation is that people who are older and sicker are more likely to select coverage earlier in the initial enrollment period, while “younger and healthier people will tend to wait until towards the end of the open enrollment period (which concludes March 31, 2014).” “The Numbers Behind “Young Invincibles” and the Affordable Care Act,” Larry Levitt, Gary Claxton and Anthony Damico, Kaiser Family Foundation, December 17, 2013, available at http://kff.org/health-reform/perspective/the-numbers-behind-young-invincibles-and-the-affordable-care-act/.