Thursday, November 21, 2013

Rate Of Applications Completed Nearly Doubles —Covered California Taking In 10 Thousand Per Day

Momentum for Enrollment Increases More Than Threefold

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The number of applications completed for Covered California™ has reached more than 10,000 a day. During the week ending Nov. 16, 71,188 applications were completed, with applicants’ eligibility for premium assistance or no-cost or low-cost Medi-Cal determined.

As of Nov. 19, Californians had completed 360,464 health coverage applications and had their eligibility determined for premium assistance or no-cost or low-cost Medi-Cal. 




“This is a clear indicator that our enrollment system is working, demand for health care coverage is strong, and Californians are embracing the benefits offered by the Affordable Care Act,” said Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee.



Of the applications completed, about 39 percent or 135,000 will likely result in Medi-Cal coverage for currently uninsured or underinsured individuals.

“The tremendous interest in Covered California’s health coverage options has been a positive influence to motivate those who are uninsured to take advantage of their new coverage options,” said Toby Douglas, Director of the Department of Health Care Services. “It is very encouraging to see that the rate of approvals for Medi-Cal continues to increase.”

The rate of enrollment in Covered California health plans has also increased. As of Nov. 19, 79,891 Californians had selected a health plan. Compared with the first week of October, during which about 700 people a day selected a health plan, the enrollment rate nearly quadrupled by the second week of November, to about 2,700 plan selections per day.

The increase is mirrored by Medi-Cal, both through Covered California and by applications processed by county health agencies. In October, county human services agencies processed 270,670 applications, a 30% increase over the previous month.

In October, Los Angeles County, where pricing regions 15 and 16 are located, had the largest number of enrollments, totaling 6,978, including subsidy-eligible and nonsubsidized consumers. San Diego County, Orange County and San Bernardino/Riverside counties followed closely.

Expanded data about those who enrolled during October shows that 18- to 34-year-olds are applying in direct proportion to California’s population.

“Not only are we seeing strong enrollment numbers overall, but enrollment in key demographics like the so-called young invincibles is very encouraging,” said Lee.

Of the 30,830 individuals who enrolled during October, 22.5 percent, or about 6,900, were between 18 and 34 years old. This group makes up about 21 percent of the state’s population.

English was by far the predominant language of those who enrolled during October. Covered California anticipates a more diverse language mix in the coming months, with greater in-person enrollment, as language-specific outreach and marketing rolls out in November and December.

“The enrollment numbers so far reflect a tremendous demand for health insurance, which will only grow stronger as the facts about Covered California health coverage options spread across California’s diverse communities of language and culture,” said Lee.


For more details about applications and enrollment, please see the charts that follow.  



As of Nov. 19, 2013, 79,891 individuals have selected a plan.

Note: These represent individual application counts for the weekly federal reporting periods. The numbers are not additive for accumulative purposes due to the dynamic nature of application status throughout the enrollment cycle (e.g., an applicant may have changed application status).

[Click on each table below to enlarge]








About Covered California
Covered California is the state’s marketplace for the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Covered California, in partnership with the California Department of Health Care Services, was charged with creating a new health insurance marketplace in which individuals and small businesses can get access to affordable health insurance plans. With coverage starting in 2014, Covered California helps individuals determine whether they are eligible for premium assistance that is available on a sliding-scale basis to reduce insurance costs or whether they are eligible for low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for their health needs and budget. Small businesses can purchase competitively priced health insurance plans and offer their employees the ability to choose from an array of plans and may qualify for federal tax credits.

Covered California is an independent part of the state government whose job is to make the new market work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the Governor and the Legislature. For more information on Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.

About the Department of Health Care Services
The Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) works to preserve and improve the physical and mental health of all Californians.  DHCS provides health care services for more than 8.5 million Californians through Medi-Cal, including medical, dental, mental health, substance use treatment services and long-term services and supports.  This is accomplished through an investment of approximately $70 billion annually in public funds for the care of low-income families, children, pregnant women, seniors and persons with disabilities.  DHCS focuses on delivering quality, effective services primarily through the more coordinated systems of care provided by 21 Medi-Cal managed care plans located in all of California’s 58 counties.  For more information about DHCS, please visit www.dhcs.ca.gov.