Tags: Donald Trump | Healthcare Reform | Trump Administration | obamacare | open enrollment | repeal and replace | health insurance marketplace

The Hill: Obamacare Signups Surge, But Likely to Fall Short

The Hill: Obamacare Signups Surge, But Likely to Fall Short
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By    |   Thursday, 23 November 2017 07:00 PM

The early enrollment for Obamacare has seen 2.3 million people sign up for healthcare coverage through the first 18 days of the exchanges, a surprising total for experts even if it might be due to urgency of a tighter deadline, The Hill reported.

Experts still expect lower total enrollment, according to the report.

Still, the early returns buoy supporters of the healthcare law amid persistent GOP calls to repeal and replace it during the first year of President Donald Trump's administration.

"But there are a lot fewer days," Kaiser Family Foundation health policy expert Larry Levitt told The Hill. "It's really hard to generalize from these early enrollment numbers."

Multiple attempts to replace former President Barack Obama's signature healthcare legislation have failed in the Senate, which features a mere 52-48 GOP edge. And President Donald Trump tweeted a rebuke of Obamacare's rising premiums and the "disaster" should be "owned by the Democrats," vowing to return to "repeal and replace" after tax cuts.

Standard & Poor's projected as many as 1.6 million fewer enrolled than 2016's 12.2 million total because of the GOP repeal effort and because open enrollment ends Dec. 15 instead of Jan. 31 as it did before.

The numbers last year surged highest immediately before the Dec. 15 deadline for Jan. 1 coverage and the Jan. 31 open enrollment deadline, Levitt told The Hill.

Even if the current surprisingly high pace of signups continues through Dec. 15, overall enrollment will still be woefully short of 2016's total because of the fewer days, according to the report.

"There could be a fear factor, people going out and enrolling before more changes happen," the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Katherine Hempstead told The Hill. "The negative publicity has increased awareness a bit."

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Experts are surprised by the early enrollment for Obamacare, but still expect enrollment to fall short due to a tighter deadline, The Hill reported, as President Donald Trump's pushed repeal and replace on Twitter on Thanksgiving Day.
obamacare, open enrollment, repeal and replace, health insurance marketplace
Thursday, 23 November 2017 07:00 PM
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