February 17 – February 23, 2015

10.75 Million More Americans Covered by Medicaid/CHIP Since October 2013: On February 23, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published its latest enrollment report for Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The report found that an additional 10.75 million Americans were covered through one of the two programs since October 2013, when the first open enrollment period began. States that expanded their Medicaid programs saw a 27 percent increase in enrollment, while non-expansion states saw a 7 percent increase. The report analyzes enrollment data through December 2014.

New Enrollment Opportunity For Consumers That Pay Fine for Not Having Coverage in 2014: On February 20, CMS announced a new Special Enrollment Period (SEP) from March 15 to April 30 in states using the federally facilitated marketplace (FFM) platform. The SEP is for consumers who find out, while filing their taxes, that they will owe a fine for not having health insurance in 2014. They can then get health coverage for 2015 and avoid paying the full fine amount when filing their 2015 tax returns. Several state-based marketplaces (SBMs) — including CaliforniaMinnesotaNew YorkVermont, and Washington State — have also created SEPs to align with tax filing season.

Several SBMs Continue to Help Consumers Unable to Meet Open Enrollment Deadline: After the February 15 deadlines, many SBMs created accommodations for consumers who were unable to finish their applications. In Kentucky, Maryland, New York, and Washington State, consumers can still complete their applications for 2015 marketplace coverage. See a roundup of different states’ deadlines and accommodations on our blog.

HHS Correcting Tax Forms for 800,000 HealthCare.gov Enrollees: Approximately800,000 FFM enrollees received incorrect information on their 1095-A tax forms about the amount of financial help they received to purchase marketplace coverage in 2014. Consumers enrolled in 2014 marketplace coverage need the Form 1095-A to obtain or reconcile premium tax credits when they file their federal taxes. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is contacting these enrollees by phone and email to let them know the information on the forms they received is incorrect. HHS will mail corrected forms to enrollees and make them available in their online accounts in early March, and is asking affected consumers to wait to file their 2014 taxes until they receive a corrected Form 1095-A.

Final Rule Released: Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2016: On February 20, CMS posted its final rule for the Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2016, including new guidance on SEPs, hardship exemptions, and dates for the third open enrollment period (OE3). OE3 for the health insurance marketplaces will run from November 1, 2015, through January 31, 2016. In December, Enroll America commented on the proposed rule and recommended a number of provisions to make enrollment more streamlined and accessible for more consumers. 

Enrollment Updates:

NoteCollecting and reporting of enrollment numbers varies by marketplace. To fully understand the enrollment numbers below, it may be necessary to view the original source for context (source links are provided).

  • Colorado: 139,652 marketplace plan selections and 79,914 enrolled in Medicaid/CHIP as of February 15.
  • District of Columbia: A total of 18,431 marketplace plan selections (new and renewing consumers) during OE2 as of February 15.
  • Maryland: A total of 119,096 marketplace plan selections (new and renewing consumers) and 145,149 enrolled in Medicaid/CHIP during OE2 as of February 15.
  • Minnesota: 60,092 marketplace plan selections and 98,908 enrolled in Medicaid/CHIP during OE2 as of February 15.
  • New York: A total of 407,488 marketplace plan selections (new and renewing consumers) and 373,518 enrolled in Medicaid/CHIP during OE2 as of February 15.
  • Rhode Island: A total of 30,744 marketplace plan selections (new and renewing consumers) during OE2 as of February 15.
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