NationNational PoliticsPolitics Now

Obamacare enrollment continues to rise in January

Laws and LegislationCrime, Law and JusticeAffordable Care Act (Obamacare)Barack ObamaMarilyn Tavenner

WASHINGTON – Approximately 3 million people have now enrolled in health insurance plans sold through marketplaces created by President Obama’s health law, the administration announced Friday.

The milestone indicates nearly a million additional people have signed up since the end of December. It also suggests that the marketplaces are continuing to recover from a disastrous launch on Oct. 1.

Administration officials expressed optimism Friday that enrollment would increase through the end of March, when the open enrollment period for 2014 coverage closes.

“As our outreach efforts kick into even higher gear, we anticipate these numbers will continue to grow, particularly as we reach even more uninsured young adults,” Medicare and Medicaid chief Marilyn Tavenner, whose agency is overseeing the rollout, said in a blog post.

PHOTOS: The battle over Obamacare

The state-based marketplaces – a centerpiece of the Affordable Care Act, commonly called Obamacare – were created so Americans who do not get coverage at work could select among plans that offer at least a basic set of benefits and cannot turn away sick people.

Americans who make less than four times the federal poverty level – or about $94,000 for a family of four – qualify for government subsidies to offset the cost of their premiums.

Even with the rising enrollment, it is unclear if the administration will hit its target of 7 million enrollees this year. But most experts believe there will be another surge in March, as people rush to get insurance so they will not be hit with a penalty for not having coverage.

It also remains unclear how many of the new enrollees were previously uninsured and how many are healthy, key metrics that will determine the effectiveness of the new marketplaces. The Obama administration has not released this information.

Follow Politics Now on Twitter and Facebook

Noam.levey@latimes.com

Twitter: @noamlevey

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
Related Content
Laws and LegislationCrime, Law and JusticeAffordable Care Act (Obamacare)Barack ObamaMarilyn Tavenner
  • 2014's political moments
    2014's political moments

    Including battles between Congress and the White House, as well as over gay marriage and road closures in New Jersey, these are the moments that capture the politics of 2014.

  • Obama's data gurus - myths and reality
    Obama's data gurus - myths and reality

    How much of a boost did President  Obama’s 2012 campaign really get from its much-vaunted mastery of data analysis? A significant amount, but not as much as some people think, according to a new analysis by two leading political scientists.

Comments
Loading