How many new people have health insurance due to obamacare now

In between the Medicaid expansion, the exchanges and people 18-26 being on their parents plans how many new people are now covered? I’ve heard 15-20 million, is that about right? However some of those aren’t new, they were people who had private insurance that was cancelled due to the aca. Their insurance is better now but I don’t know if I’d call them the newly insured.

Here’s an article about why it’s difficult to know the answer to your question.

I can’t help thinking about this. Ten million people, going online and setting up their ACA, and somehow this was a daunting problem that it took months to enable in terms of software.

By contrast, I entered ESPN’s March Madness basketball tournament contest. I got an on=screen matrix of the 63 games, checked a predicted winner of each gane, and hit enter. Apparently, so did about ten million other people, about the same as the number signing up for ACA.

At any time, I can go on line, and with one click, see my bracket choices, how many I got right, which games I got right, where I stand on the leader board (currently 5,249,858th – Barack Obama is ahead of me, 2,401,346th), and all ten-million participant brackets are updated within seconds of the buzzer at the end of each game, at which time I can view the results of any of the ten million entries.

Maybe the ACA should have asked ESPN to set up the registration site for them. Handling ten million complicated submissions and keeping them up to date within seconds of changes and instantly accessible in full detail to everyone doesn’t seem to fluster ESPN at all.

All the news sources put their own emphasis on reports and there is no single source to answer your questions.

This site requires a bit of reading and analysis on your part but it is the most comprehensive source you are likely to find. It also attempts to address the “how many previously uninsured” and “how many didn’t / won’t pay” talking points.

I don’t know precisely where the problems in the federal ACA website lay. However, I enrolled using the Covered California website, which worked pretty well, and even there I could see a couple of places where things could be more complicated than the ESPN website you talk about:

First, checking for eligibility: that involves entering a whole lot of information about your family, its finances, and its immigration status. I had to upload scans of the passports of everyone in my family to prove we are citizens.

Second, determining which plans we qualify for. After all our info was entered, the website had to see which plans we could enroll in, and how much the premiums would be. Both of those items are different for every applicant. I don’t know the process behind this, but it seemed to take considerable effort.

In addition, the ACA was built from scratch. The ESPN site has been scaling up little by little for fifteen years or more.

Curious, what is the basis of this claim?

This is an IT issue, zero to do with the healthcare question being asked.

Which part of the claim are you looking for a cite for - the fact that most individual private insurance was not ACA compatible and thus was cancelled (before the president allowed another year for the non-compliant plans), or the fact that the ACA insurance is “better” ? That almost all individual private insurance was/will be cancelled is readily available (http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/obamato-to-announce-change-to-address-health-insurance-cancellations/2013/11/14/3be49d24-4d37-11e3-9890-a1e0997fb0c0_story.html). That the new insurance is “better” is certainly debatable. It is better in the sense that there are some coverages that were all but impossible to get in individual insurance before like maternity. Edit to add, and better in the sense that it is guaranteed issue - the amount of medical information they wanted to underwrite before was both absurd and intrusive. Whether it is “Better” in terms of coinsurance, deductibles, premiums, etc is definitely a YMMV situation.

Insurance that was cancelled was cancelled either entirely or largely due to the fact that the insurance did not offer as much coverage as the ACA mandated.

In my case, it was automatically replaced by a new policy without having to sign up on an exchange. I suspect this was true for most who were cancelled - insurance companies saw that as the most probable way to keep customers. Canceling without a replacement policy guarantees you lose customers…

Another point is that the ESPN system is entirely self-contained. The ACA system has to communicate with all of the private insurers, and have compatible interfaces. There was an earlier thread where some of our resident computer geeks were talking about the difficulty of making all those interfaces work, where the private insurers do not have any uniform standards for the data fields that the ACA system has to connect to.

This thread is 7 months old, but they have the answer now. The uninsured rate has dropped from about 18% down to about 13%. Roughly 8-11 million more people have insurance now.

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/10/27/us/is-the-affordable-care-act-working.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=c-column-middle-span-region&region=c-column-middle-span-region&WT.nav=c-column-middle-span-region#uninsured

Not a bad start, give it time and if more states expand medicaid and more people sign up for the subsidies that number could reach 20 million later this decade.

a friend of mine, who hasn’t been able to land a decent paying job for a long time, and hasn’t been able to get worthwhile private insurance due to “pre-existing” conditions (his and his wife’s) finally does have coverage thanks to the ACA and has been able to get some treatment.

For the life of me, I can’t figure out why I should think this is a bad thing.

Wait until you meet people who wouldn’t have insurance if not for the law and still think it is terrible idea. People who couldn’t get insurance before who got it on the exchanges, or people who wanted to retire but couldn’t until the law was passed (and now they get insurance on the exchanges) but who still want to repeal it.

Hopefully this is just a first step in this countries desperately needed health reform. But reducing the number of uninsured by 25% within 1 year of the exchanges and medicaid opening up seems like a good start.

Because doing this “good thing” tramples all over the Constitution.

But if you’re an “the ends justify the means” type of person, I suppose it’s perfectly permissible to do something like committing robbery in order to pay for college, or to ignore Constitutional restraints on government power.

Of all the unconstitutional things going on in the US (wars w/o congress, massive spying, torture) the fact that people are saying the ACA is what we need to worry about says far more about them then anything else. Besides the constitution is a vague document that people interpret their own biases on. Judges are the ones who determine if something is constitutional or not and that changes all the time.

Moderator Note

This being GQ, let’s stick to the question in the OP rather than getting into constitutional issues. If you want a wider discussion take it to GD.

Colibri
General Questions Moderator

Your friend’s insurance is not a bad thing. That’s obvious. The people in his position whose insurance went up was a bad thing. I went 6 years without a decent paying job. This hurt me directly. In a 1 for 1 comparison, it’s still a good thing because your friend got insurance but it made my struggle all the worse. I sold off assets and liquidated retirement funds to get by.

The people who can’t get a doctor under Obama care is a bad thing. Doctors have been dropped by insurance companies and that’s a bad thing.

Older people who lost their job had a tougher time getting hired because of the increase in health care costs. The jobs available shifted to temp jobs and part time jobs. People with college educations ended up displacing those at the bottom of the rung. That was a bad thing.

the 1.36 trillion dollar price tag would be a bad thing. It was suppose to help 30 million people but only 8 million signed up. So instead of costing a whopping $45,333 per person it cost $170,000. We could have bought each person in need a car filled with money. Oh, and that doesn’t include the extra cost to the consumer and businesses.

So on the whole it was a financial failure. We could have just expanded the role of medicaid and used the existing bureaucracy or made it a major tax deduction for low income people.

Can we have a cite for that? And what if a person didn’t want more coverage, because it cost more than he wanted to pay. How can that be called “better”?

I’ll give you a hint: There is not a factual answer to that question, and we’d need to debate it in GD. “Better” is subjective.