Avalere projects that 10.1 million individuals will be enrolled in an exchange plan by the end of 2016. To date, exchange enrollment has not reached original projection numbers. In March 2010, the Congressional Budget Office predicted enrollment figures for 2016 to be at 21 million. Their projections have decreased since then- in January 2016 it was 13 million and in March 2016, it was 12 million. The Obama administration projects 10 million in enrollment for 2016.
What’s causing the lower than expected numbers?
- Individuals retaining original sources of coverage (e.g., employer-sponsored coverage and off-exchange individual market coverage)
- Low participation from middle-income, healthy people
- Technology glitches
- Lack of educational resources for financial assistance
- Language barriers
Enrollment trends by population type
- The exchange-enrolled population is disproportionately older and low-income as compared to the potential exchange population
- Males and Hispanics have also enrolled at lower rates than expected
- Exchange participation rates decline significantly as incomes increase and subsidies decrease. Specifically, exchanges have enrolled more than 80 percent of the potential exchange population with incomes below 150 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL), but only two percent of individuals with incomes above 400 percent of the FPL.
For full details on ACA enrollment figures, you can access the report here.