Obamacare’s Big Start: 106,185.

by Jim Geraghty

The Department of Health and Human Services just announced that 106,185 individuals have “selected plans from the marketplace.” This, of course, does not mean that all of those folks have sent the check and officially purchased their plan. It means the plan is in their shopping cart, and they haven’t yet gone to the cash register.

EnrollMaven.com, which collected all publicly released data in one place, had the total at 96,281. Pretty close.

HHS says another “975,407 have made it through the process by applying and receiving an eligibility determination, but have not yet selected a plan. An additional 396,261 have been determined or assessed eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).”

Of course, to avoid the “death spiral” of insurance plans full of older and sicker consumers, and not enough young and healthy consumers paying premiums, the only measuring stick that counts is purchases.

Which is some number lower than 106,185.