Obamacare’s Very Disappointing 2016 Enrollment Period

With the results now in from the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) third open enrollment period, it’s getting increasingly difficult to sugarcoat the extremely low numbers of enrollees relative to original projections. The 12.7 million people who signed up for an exchange plan amounts to just half as many enrollees as was projected by government and private sector research organizations when the ACA passed. The Rand Corporation predicted 27 million, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services predicted 24.8 million, the Urban Institute predicted 23.1 million, and the Congressional Budget Office predicted 21 million.

At the end of open enrollment last year, the Obama administration announced 11.7 million sign-ups. However, one month later, there were only 10.2 million people with effectuated exchange coverage. Assuming a similar trend this year, even accounting for the administration beginning to purge some people who have already failed to pay premiums, means that there are likely at most 12 million people currently enrolled in an exchange plan.

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