Smart Benefits: Obamacare Exchanges: Enrollment Expectations
Monday, October 06, 2014
-Enrollment Period: The 2015 open enrollment period will end Feb. 15, and be about three months shorter than Obamacare's first season.
-Plan Options: The number of insurers set to sell health plans on Obamacare exchanges next year is 25 percent higher than for 2014, meaning more choices for consumers.
-Tax Penalties: About 30 million people remain uninsured and will face tax penalties for the first time unless they can secure an exemption.
-Website Availability: The technology glitches that plagued HealthCare.gov may be largely resolved.
-Premium Rates: According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, in the 38 states and D.C. that have finalized rates or released proposed rates for individual insurance plans, the average premium would rise 6 percent from last year to $382 per month, before subsidies are factored in. Despite this average, however, actual premium costs vary significantly, for example, from a 22% decrease to a 35% increase (in Colorado).
The Congressional Budget Office has projected that 13 million will enroll in Obamacare exchanges next year. But these and other factors may impact whether the numbers reach their target – or if, as Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell recently said – that target needs to be reassessed.
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