I've set up a Google Docs spreadsheet devoted to keeping track of the official ACA/Obamacare signup numbers as they're reported by the states running their own exchanges (as well as other reputable sources).
The HHS Dept. has stated that they aren't planning on releasing any official numbers for the still-massively-screwed-up federal exchange (Healthcare.gov), so this will have to serve for the moment. If and when someone else starts tracking these numbers on a regular basis, I'll be happy to give up this effort, but until then, it's at least something.
Here's the place to go; I'll be compiling the numbers as they come in, to the best of my ability, at the following link:
So far, 2 weeks in, according to the listed sources, the current tally stands at
363,392 458,419 people (or households?) actually applied for actual health insurance policies through the exchanges.
However, I'll need your help. I'd appreciate it if 15 people (one for each state exchange, plus D.C.) could volunteer to check the media in each of those states for the latest official (hopefully accurate) figures on how many people have actually signed up for a healthcare policy via the ACA (as opposed to just creating an account at the website, which doesn't count).
Oregon and Washington State will be tracked by rsmpdx.
Maryland will be tracked by dadadata.
Colorado will be tracked by MotherShipper.
California will be tracked by ybruti.
Note: CJB has just volunteered to cover Nevada, thanks!
Here's the other states I need covered; If you're interested in assisting, email me at cgaba (at) brainwrap (dot) com, thanks!
--District of Columbia
Yesterday's big news was out of Oregon, where the actual website exchange is still down, but state officials have announced that a whopping 56,000 additional residents have been signed up for Medicaid thanks to the Affordable Care Act. While my chart was intended to tally those who sign up for private plans via the exchanges, it doesn't really matter as long as people without any coverage are gaining affordable, decent healthcare coverage, so I'm counting it.
A few other notes:
--Since not every story with an update will come out on a Tuesday, I'm just going with "Week 1", "Week 2" and so on. Any updates that come out from 10/15-10/21 will be listed under Week 2; from 10/22-10/28 Week 3 and so on.
--Some of the stories list "households", others list "residents" or "people". In cases where they list the number as a "household" (but it's a reliable number), I'll multiply by 2.6 (which, according to the Census Bureau, is the average number of people in a U.S. "household" these days).
--Remember that the 458,000 figure only includes info on the states that have actually released their numbers.
--Also important: This number only includes people who have actually fully completed the signup process. In many cases there are thousands of pending applications, either online or printed paper, waiting to be processed. And no, I'm not entirely sure what definition of "signed up for" to use, but I am including people who are legally signed up but haven't started paying premiums yet--if I'm signed up for Comcast but haven't actually put a check in the mail yet, they still count me as a customer, after all (well, until they send a collection agency after me, but that's a different issue).
--The magic number is 7 million, and the date for that magic number is March 30, 2014. That's the number that the Obama administration has been openly touting as their goal for the first 6 months of the exchanges; apparently, if they hit that mark, the law should be financially successful; if they fall short, it probably won't (at least not initially). Of course, it also depends on who signs up--ideally, they want a good chunk of those 7 million to be young, healthy folks (the type unlikely to actually use too many healthcare services), to shore up the cost of the rest of us.
To hit 7 million in 6 months, they'll have to average at least 270,000 signups per week. However, the signup numbers will fluctuate greatly depending on the time (expect a spike in signups as we approach Dec. 15th), so I'm not too concerned...yet.
Yesterday the official New York State of Health Twitter account posted the following:
Unfortunately, they don't have an actual press release yet with details, but I'm going to assume that "have qualified for health insurance" means that they've completed their applications and have had their income levels verified. While they may not have all actually selected a plan, I'm counting it until the powers that be give a more formal definition to use.
That brings NY's tally up from 40,000 to 100,000, which means an extra 60,000 to the national figure!
Today (Friday) has seen some significant updates to both the spreadsheet and the figures, including:
--I've taken ownership of the spreadsheet by adding "by brainwrap" to the site (I debated about whether to do this or not, but screw it)
--I've added links to 3 other sources which are trying to track the number of signups, although all of them have lower numbers than I list: 50,000 (Daily Briefing), 156,000 (Aaron Strauss), 185,000 (Sarah Kliff's WonkBlog). It really depends on what you (or the state, or the media source) define as "applied", "approved", "enrolled" or "signed up". It also depends on whether you include Medicaid expansion or not (in my case, I'm doing so, which no doubt explains much of the higher total).
--Maryland has released their latest tally (PDF), which includes both exchange signups as well as Medicaid expansion numbers...and now sits at over 84,000 people with health coverage!
--Here's a great article that explains the situation with the state-run websites, which have fared far better than the disasterous Healthcare.gov