Things aren’t just bad for Obamacare enrollment in Colorado; they’re worse than the worst-case projections.
As the Denver Post reports, Connect for Health Colorado projected that, in a worst-case scenario, it would have enrolled 11,108 people in private insurance plans by mid-November. On November 18, the exchange announced that it had only enrolled 6,001 Coloradans.
During the same time period, Colorado said it had signed up over 47,000 for Medicaid under Obamacare’s expanded Medicaid. The state is now almost 30 percent towards its goal of enrolling 106,000 in the program.
The Medicaid enrollment process could be slowing enrollment in private plans. Federal regulations require that people seeking private insurance on the state’s exchange first discover whether they’re eligible for Medicaid. That means that Coloradans seeking insurance have had to fill out a twelve-page application – and, if any information is incorrect or missing, could wait up to 45 days before being told they’re ineligible for the program – before moving on to purchasing a private insurance plan.
It’s a system that Democratic governor John Hickenlooper is concerned about, and he has asked his staff and state agencies whether the Medicaid steps are necessary, according to internal e-mails. The state’s Health Care Policy and Finance Department, which oversees Medicaid, has told Connect for Health Colorado that it is working with federal officials to streamline the process for those who say they are uninterested in Medicaid.
Via the Associated Press.