Certified specialist helps a consumer apply to Covered California at a free enrollment fair at Pasadena City College. (David McNew/Getty Images)
By David Gorn, California Healthline
No one knows yet exactly how many of the 1.2 million people enrolled so far in Covered California were previously uninsured — but one person has a pretty good guess.
“Over the next few years at the exchange, we expect to see much higher numbers of the previously uninsured.”
Ken Jacobs, chair of the Labor Center at UC-Berkeley, projects about 39 percent of enrollees were previously uninsured, or roughly 468,000 people. (With Thursday’s announcement of an additional 70,000 people enrolled on Covered California during the grace period, it’s reasonable that the number of previously-insured-now-covered will rise.)
That means it’s likely that 61 percent of Covered California enrollees already had health insurance.
“One reason is you have to look at who was expected to enroll in the exchange, and there were two large groups,” Jacobs said. “One of those groups is the people in the individual market.” Continue reading
Covered California executive director Peter Lee speaking to advocates and reporters in San Francisco on Oct. 1, the day the Covered California marketplace opened. (Angela Hart/KQED)
By April Dembosky
Enrollment in California’s health insurance exchange rose dramatically in early December as the deadline looms for coverage beginning January 1. An average of 15,000 people per day signed up for plans the first two days of this week, up from 7,000 per day last week — the first week of December — and 2,700 people per day in mid-November.
“And that momentum is not stopping, it’s building,” said Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, the state’s marketplace, in a call with reporters.
California continues to outperform other state and federally-run marketplaces, with more people enrolling for plans in California than any other state. As of the end of November, 109,296 Californians had enrolled in a plan –- representing 30 percent of all enrollees in the country. (See top chart.)
Another 179,000 people applied and are likely to be eligible for Medi-Cal, the state’s version of Medicaid.
Covered California has been successful in attracting young people to sign up, a critical cohort for balancing insurance pools and keeping the price of premiums low. Eighteen to 34-year-olds represent 21 per cent of enrollees in the marketplace, roughly in line with their representation in the California population. Continue reading