11.3 Million Americans Enrolled in Marketplace Health Coverage: As of December 26, nearly 11.3 million people were covered through the health insurance marketplace, according a report released January 7 from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Of the 11.3 million, 3 million were new enrollees. More than half (51 percent) of the 8.2 million returning consumers actively re-enrolled, and the rest were automatically re-enrolled. In nearly half of states and the District of Columbia, marketplace enrollment through December 26 was higher than it was at end of the full second open enrollment period.
IRS Report on Financial Help to Purchase Health Coverage in 2014: In a report to Congress on the 2014 tax year, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced that as of October 2015, around 3.5 million consumers, out of an expected had 4.8 million, had filed their 2014 taxes indicating that they received tax credits for marketplace coverage. Consumers can get tax credits that lower their costs for premiums during the year based on estimated income, but must file certain tax forms to account for the amount of tax credits they received. If a consumer does not file taxes properly, their tax credits may be automatically adjusted or stopped entirely. The IRS is working with consumers to alert them if they have to file taxes or if they haven’t filed the correct forms. In addition, around 7.9 million individuals reported paying the fine for not having coverage, averaging about $210 per person.
President Vetoes Repeal of the Affordable Care Act: On January 8, President Obama vetoed a budget reconciliation bill that would have repealed the Affordable Care Act. On January 26, the House is scheduled to vote to try to override the veto, but the bill originally passed with less than the two-thirds majority needed to override.
- California: On January 1, a Covered California policy limiting consumers’ costs for certain specialty prescription drugs took effect, with most marketplace plans capping out-of-pocket costs for these specialty drugs at $250 a month.
- Illinois: On January 8, Get Covered Illinois announced Karen Woods as the marketplace’s new executive director.
- Federally Facilitated Marketplace: As of January 2, more than 8.6 million people were enrolled in plans for 2016 through the marketplace.
- California: More than 238,000 new consumers had signed up through Covered California as of January 2.
- Connecticut: As of January 5, more than 104,000 consumers were enrolled in marketplace coverage through Access Health CT.