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More Than 20,000 People Enrolled in Health Coverage Through DC Health Link Since October 1

Friday, January 10, 2014

More Than 20,000 People Enrolled in Health Coverage Through DC Health Link Since October 1

New data shows strong enrollment and a healthy age mix.

The DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority today released new data showing strong enrollment activity through DCHealthLink.com, the District of Columbia’s new online health insurance marketplace for individuals, families and small businesses. Since the exchange opened for business on October 1, DC Health Link has enrolled 20,290 people. This includes District residents who enrolled in private health plans and in Medicaid, as well as people with coverage through their employers.

“We are pleased to be providing quality, affordable health coverage options to over 20,000 people and look forward to continuing to work closely with our business and community partners to continue to educate and enroll District residents and small businesses,” said Diane C. Lewis, MPA, chair of the DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority Executive Board.

In December 2013, DC Health Link experienced significant enrollment activity in the areas of call volume and online enrollment. The highest call volume for DC Health Link Contact Center was 2,169 calls on December 23 (the deadline for District residents to select coverage with a January 1 effective date). Within the week prior to the deadline, DC Health Link’s online enrollment in private health plans doubled.

“Our experience in the last two weeks of December shows that consumers are deadline driven,” said Mila Kofman, J.D. executive director of the DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority.

Enrollment

To date, 20,290 people have enrolled through DC Health Link in private health plans or Medicaid:

  • 2,649 enrolled in private health plans through the DC Health Link individual and family marketplace for coverage that begins on January 1,2014;
  • 4,677 people gained Medicaid coverage through DC Health Link; and
  • 11,967 people enrolled through the DC Health Link small business marketplace.
  • An additional 997 people have already enrolled for individual and family coverage that will begin on February 1, 2014.

People have until January 15, 2014 to complete an application and select a health plan in order to have coverage that begins on February 1, 2014. Open enrollment for individuals and families will continue through March 31, 2014 and there is no enrollment deadline for small businesses. Small businesses can establish their own open enrollment periods for their employees whenever they choose throughout the year.

Demographic Information for People in Qualified Health Plans Through the Individual Marketplace

“As a former Superintendent of Insurance, I know how important it is to have young people in the insurance pool. We have been creative to ensure that young people signed up for coverage,” Kofman said.
In fact, many young people have enrolled through DC Health Link. The largest enrollment – 37% of enrollees in private coverage through DC Health Link – is 26 to 34 year olds; the second largest is 35 to 44 year olds (20%)

“Whether it is the DC Health Link Assisters going to places where younger people go, such as local bars at night or Air Jordan debut events in the day, we know that young people want competitively priced quality health insurance,” said Kofman. “Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, they finally have it.”

Enrollment in Private Coverage through DC Health Link -- AGE

Demographic information

*Numbers in parentheses represent numbers of individuals.
Note: This is enrollment through the individual marketplace (does not include Medicaid and Small Group)

Consumers enrolling through DC Health Link have chosen platinum level plans. Platinum plans typically have the lowest out of pocket costs, but also have the highest premiums. People with private coverage that began January 1 through DC Health Link, chose the following: 695 selected platinum level plans; 659 selected bronze level plans; 622 selected gold level plans and 581 selected silver level plans.

“We are seeing a more even distribution of metal level plan selection than was previously forecast,” said Kofman. “In fact, our data shows that by a small margin, more people have selected Platinum level plans than any other level of coverage.”

DC Health Link Contact Center Data

The DC Health Link Contact Center received 35,484 calls between October 1, 2013 and December 31, 2013. Call volume increased significantly as the deadline for January 1, 2014 health insurance coverage approached. In October, the average daily call volume was 192 calls per day. This increased to an average of 330 calls per day in November, and escalated to an average of 836 calls per day in December. Highest call volume was 2,169 calls on December 23 (the deadline for District residents to obtain individual and family health insurance policies with a January 1 effective date).

DC Health Link Website Traffic

DCHealthLink.com had 164,000 unique visitors from October 1, 2013 to December 31, 2013. Between December 1 and December 23, there were more than 101,000 visits to the site by more than 52,000 unique visitors. Traffic increased from an average of 85,000 visits per month in October and November to more than 120,000 total visits in December as the deadline for enrolling in January 1, 2014 coverage approached.

Note: Prior data releases included information on accountholders (households). New data reflects number of people enrolled through DC Health Link.