We are back in business with lots of new numbers, including a new estimate for signups in the extension periods. The big question of the day is where the heck is the March HHS report, including the extensions up to April 15?

After a false start on Saturday marked by a cold sweat, brainwrap is back on restricted duty. What a nice birthday present for me. (Also Emperor Hirohito, boo, hiss; Duke Ellington, yay; and passage of the People's Budget, the first budget in British history with the expressed intent of redistributing wealth among the British public, yay.) It will take a few days to work through the backlog at this rate.

The other continuing news is the Republican retreat from repeal to replace and beyond, as the signups numbers advance, and so does ACA support in the polls. Even in Republican districts.

Estimated Exchange QHPs as of April 30, 2014: 8.14M

Estimated Total, all sources: (14.4 M - 23.6 M)

Individual QHP Range: (7.57M - 13.14M)  •  Medicaid/CHIP (5.22M - 7.26M)

ESIs (111K confirmed; up to 8.2M more possible)  •  Sub26ers (1.60M - 3.10M)

Update: Guest post on "Deadline Creep".

Update x1:

Guest Post: What Is All This "Deadline Creep" Really Telling Us?

Democrats, Republicans, and insurance companies all wanted Open Enrollment extended, for quite different reasons, even though in mature insurance markets enrollment periods come with cutoff dates so that people do not sign up only when they get sick. It might run from Nov. 15 to April 15 next year, not just to Feb. 15. Nevada has perpetual Open Enrollment.

Definitely worth reading and savoring in full.

Update x0: Idaho hits 76K QHPs, breaks own target by 90%!

Add one more group to the "extended extension" period list...

Those in the ACA's temporary "High-Risk Pool", who were originally supposed to have enrolled by the end of 2013, then the end of April; they've now been given until the end of June to do so:
Anti-ACA outfit has a real "gotcha!" moment!! (Um...not really)

Because Huh?

Less than 140K request ACA Mandate Exemption. Nationally.

New Mexico: Final QHP tally 35K, up 32% since 3/31

Oregon: Paid QHPs up to 66K, Medicaid up to 172.4K

Minnesota breaks 50K QHPs, 150K Medicaid as of 4/22

Pull the sheet over Cover Oregon; it's done.

Oregon is expected to switch to the Federal exchange. The current mostly paper system will continue in use until then.

My back-of-the-envelope 4/30 exchange QHP total projection: 8.14M

I expect AT LEAST 7.5 million to have paid their premiums by late May.
And we have previously established that most who don't pay either find a better plan, or have a change in circumstances, such as getting a job with coverage, going on Medicaid, or having more or fewer people in the family.

Where the heck is the March HHS Report???

The answer is: I have no idea.
Michigan: ACA Medicaid expansion up to 140K in first 3 weeks!

Washington State: Final Totals: 164K QHPs, 423.2K Medicaid

Hawaii: A few hundred more QHPs...and a surprising doubling of SHOP enrollees

Idaho: About 5K Woodworkers (close to my 5,600 estimate)

Pennsylvania: Woodworker number defined as around 18K (up from my 13K estimate)

Nevada inches up a few hundred QHPs more to 45.3K

Arkansas: 44.7K QHPs thru 4/21

This AR update is noteworthy for being the first enrollment update I've received which actually includes a reference to...myself!
The original target for Arkansas enrollment from the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) in September 2013 was 51,000 — Arkansas is currently at 87.5 percent of that target. However, enrollment guru Charles Gaba found that an appropriate projection for Arkansas would be 62,000.
One must ask whether that shortfall is due to the well-known Red State Effect. In contrast with, say, California.

Various & Sundry: Insurance co's thrilled, but also at fault for plenty of "late" payments

This LA Times story from 4/21 is chock full of good news:

First, apparently the ACA is such a "socialist, anti-capitalist" enemy of the free market that the private, for-profit insurance companies are just fleeing for the hills. Oh wait, actually...
Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, said all 11 current health plans have indicated they plan to return next year. He also said three new plans have submitted letters of intent indicating they may compete on the exchange in 2015.
As to the "late" payments:
The immediate task ahead for health insurers is getting bills and identification cards out to thousands of new customers. Anthem, Blue Shield and other insurers were overwhelmed by a crush of sign-ups in late December among people wanting coverage that started Jan. 1.
My son, Certifiable Genius, among them. Of course, it happened again during the Obamacare Surge at the end of March. Can you remember when we didn't know whether we would reach 6 million? It seems so long ago now. But then it was 7 million known at the end of March, and then all of a sudden the insurers had to cope with another whole million on top of that.

And the Republicans, too, LOL. If you haven't lately, check out the Obamacare Saves Lives group feed for lives (and treasure and sanity) saved so far and in prospect, and Republican political careers about to be destroyed. They have had to abandon repeal, and now even replace. The word of the day is "reform".

Top House Republican utters the 'R' word about Obamacare, and it's not 'repeal' nor is it 'replace'

Republicans flail as they lose their ONE BIG ISSUE for November

by kos

We've talked a great deal about the law's improving numbers, and yet another poll confirms the trend, this one by Democracy Corps, which clocks in at 50-43 in favor of the Democratic position on health care (support current law and improve) in Republican House districts.

Republicans bet early on opposition to the ACA, and that bet is already looking like a terrible idea. You can almost feel the mojo bleed out of Republicans, their confidence shattered, flailing for an answer to the nation's changing public opinion.

Originally posted to Mokurai on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:20 AM PDT.

Also republished by Obamacare Saves Lives.

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