For Immediate Release: November 4, 2013

Washington Healthplanfinder sees more than 55,000 Enrollments in First Month

Washington State Marketplace Starts Strong, Continues to Make Improvements to Site OLYMPIA, Wash.

Washington Healthplanfinder today announced more than 55,000 residents have enrolled in health coverage since Oct. 1. Since launch, more than 100,000 people in Washington State have either fully enrolled in new health coverage options or completed an application that is awaiting payment due in December.

“This was a historical opening month for Washington Healthplanfinder,” said Richard Onizuka, CEO for the Washington Health Benefit Exchange. “We are proud of our success to-date, but continue to be laser-focused on fine-tuning our site to ensure all of our customers are having a positive enrollment experience.”

Washington Healthplanfinder IT staff continue to perform weekend maintenance to further improve the online customer experience. The addition of 145 new representatives at the Customer Support Center over the next several weeks are expected to gradually decrease call center wait times.

“We continue to be pleased with Washington State residents’ response to the Health Benefit Exchange,” said Dorothy Teeter, director of the Health Care Authority. “We appreciate the commitment of our community partners to get people connected to insurance coverage.”

Enrollment numbers were impacted slightly this week by outages of the Federal Data Services Hub, which is managed by the federal government and allows Washington Healthplanfinder and other state-based marketplaces to verify identity and determine eligibility for financial help. Should this occur again, a message will be posted to www.wahealthplanfinder.org and in-depth information will be posted to our Status Center.

Updated numbers from Oct. 1 to Oct. 31 are included below. More comprehensive information, including county-by-county data, will be distributed this week in a separate report:

Web and Call Center Data
Unique Visitors

498,006

Total Site Visits

2,710,921

Page Views

11,527,730

Unique Page Views

8,180,172

Accounts Created

118,531

Call Center Volume

94,495

Average Call Center Wait Times

19:55 min

Enrollments Completed
Qualified Health Plans

            7,341

Medicaid Newly Eligible/Coverage Jan. 1

29,622

Medicaid/Immediate coverage

18,702

Total

55,367

 

Total Completed Applications
Total Applications

58,140

 

Total Applicants Included on Applications Completed*
Qualified Health Plan Applicants – QHP Only

34,861

Qualified Health Plan/Medicaid Mixed**

15,426

Medicaid Applicants Only

54,648

Total Applicants**

104,631

 

*Note: These numbers reflect enrollments and applications through Oct. 31. Applications completed includes individuals who have completed applications but have not yet submitted payment. Payment is due on Dec. 23, 2013 for coverage that begins on Jan. 1, 2014.

*Note: These numbers have been updated to more clearly identify which applicants are applying for Qualified Health Plans and which are applying for Medicaid. Qualified Health Plan/Medicaid Mixed indicates applications in which at least one individual on the application is purchasing a Qualified Health Plan while others may be eligible for Medicaid.

To drive additional enrollment through Washington Healthplanfinder, staff are continuing a mobile enrollment tour that is traveling next to Everett Community College on Nov. 7, the Kent Memorial Park Building on Nov. 9 and the University of Washington – Seattle on Nov. 12. More information about these events is located here.

For users who are unable to complete an application online at wahealthplanfinder.org, please visit the Washington Healthplanfinder “Quick Tips” page on the Washington Healthplanfinder Status Center.  If children, pregnant women and family Medicaid applicants are unable to complete an application online, they can access a paper application through the Health Care Authority website.

For more information about Washington Healthplanfinder and to enroll in health coverage, please visit www.wahealthplanfinder.org.

CONTACTS
Washington Healthplanfinder, Bethany Frey, (360) 688-7752

Washington Health Care Authority, Jim Stevenson, (360) 725-1915

About Washington Healthplanfinder

Washington Healthplanfinder is a new online marketplace for individuals, families and small businesses in Washington to compare and enroll in health insurance coverage and gain access to tax credits, reduced cost sharing and public programs such as Medicaid. Washington Healthplanfinder began enrolling consumers on Oct. 1, 2013, for health insurance coverage beginning on Jan. 1, 2014. The open enrollment period extends through March 31, 2014.

About the Washington Health Benefit Exchange

The Washington Health Benefit Exchange is a public-private partnership established in accordance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) with the goal to redefine people’s experience with health care through the creation of a new health insurance marketplace for individuals and small businesses. The Exchange is separate from the state and governed by an independent 11-member board appointed by former Gov. Chris Gregoire in Dec. 2011.

About Health Care Authority

The Health Care Authority includes the two largest state health care purchasing programs – Apple Health (Medicaid) and Public Employees Benefits system, which handles state employee benefits. Under Medicaid expansion, income eligibility guidelines will increase to 138% of the federal poverty level effective Jan. 1, 2014, increasing state Medicaid rolls by an estimated 328,000 individuals.

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