January 12, 2016 – January 18, 2016

Medicaid Expansion Funding Change Coming in President’s Proposed Budget: On January 14, the White House announced that its proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year would include a provision granting greater federal funding for new states to expand Medicaid. Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), states that expand Medicaid can receive federal funding to cover 100 percent of the cost for the first three years (2014 – 2016). With the change in the president’s proposed budget, that three-year period could start at any time when a state decides to expand, not just the 2014 – 2016 period. Thirty-one states and the District of Columbia have expanded or announced that they will expand Medicaid under the ACA.

New Marketplace Plan Selection Data by ZIP Code: A new downloadable data source from the Department of Health and Human Services includes ZIP code­–level totals of marketplace plan selections in the 38 states using HealthCare.gov. The data include nearly 8.7 million plan selections from November 1, 2015 (the start of the current open enrollment period) through January 9, 2016.

State Updates:

  • Colorado: People whose 2015 health plans are longer offered in their area will have until February 29 to enroll through the marketplace under a new Special Enrollment Period (SEP) announced by Connect for Health Colorado on January 13.
  • Kentucky: The commonwealth’s governor has decided to dissolve Kynect as a state-based marketplace and switch to the federally facilitated marketplace for the fourth open enrollment period.
  • Louisiana: On January 12, the governor issued an executive order to begin expanding Medicaid under the ACA, expecting coverage to be effective July 1. An estimated 300,000 Louisianans would be newly eligible for health coverage through the program.
  • Minnesota: In response to heightened demand and longer-than-usual wait times for the call center ahead of deadline for January 1 coverage, MNsure plans to hire additional call center staff for the weeks ahead of the January 31 deadline.
  • New York: On December 23, the governor signed into law a new Special Enrollment Period (SEP) allowing women who become pregnant to enroll in marketplace coverage outside of open enrollment. New York is the first state to establish this SEP.

Enrollment Updates:

  • Federally Facilitated Marketplace: As of January 9, nearly 8.7 million people were newly enrolled or re-enrolled in marketplace health coverage through HealthCare.gov.
  • Massachusetts: Around 28,000 new consumers had enrolled in 2016 marketplace coverage as of January 8.
  • Montana: When Medicaid expansion coverage took effect on January 1, around 20,000 Montanans had signed up for coverage through the program.
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