SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Covered California™ announced today that 1 million people statewide have enrolled in health care coverage in the exchange’s first historic open-enrollment period, which ends March 31.
Covered California’s enrollment reached the 1-million mark late Friday. By the end of Saturday, enrollment reached 1,018,315 in the health care exchange marketplace. The figure represents the number of people applying for coverage and selecting insurance plans for themselves and their family members through the exchange.
“This is a historic threshold for our exchange, for the state of California and for the nation,” said Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee. “It speaks to the immense need for the Affordable Care Act and the millions of people who have been waiting for affordable coverage. We are pleased and privileged to be helping a million people find the peace of mind that comes with having insurance.
“But we’re not stopping at a million,” he continued. “With two weeks remaining in open enrollment, we can’t help but think about the millions more in California who need insurance and may be missing out. We will keep driving home our message about getting covered and encouraging people to sign up now so they are not left out.”
While the last day of enrollment is March 31, Covered California is calling on consumers to sign up as quickly as possible to avoid the expected last-minute rush of applications that could slow the online experience.
Covered California announced last week that enrollment stood at more than 880,000 at the end of February and at 923,000 as of March 9. Insurance plans are reporting that nearly 85 percent of enrollees have paid their premiums, which is required for health care coverage to take effect. The enrollment figures are well above the exchange’s highest projections last fall of 696,000 in the first six-month enrollment period.
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..com.