By now I’m sure you understand the actuarial needs of Healthcare.gov and the state exchanges. Without enough young and healthy people — who are less likely to need insurance and less likely to be able to afford it — signing up for ♡bamaCare!!!, then the whole, rotten structure collapses. Assuming something else doesn’t kill it first, preferably with fire.
Just 24 percent of Americans signing up for coverage under President Obama’s health care law through December were part of the young adult demographic, the Department of Health and Human Services announced Monday — well below the nearly 39 percent the White House had once deemed essential to the law’s success.
In a new report, HHS said that through Dec. 28 (about halfway through the six-month open enrollment period), roughly 2.2 million Americans signed up for coverage on one of the law’s health insurance exchanges. That’s well below the administration’s target of 3.3 million. And HHS still hasn’t disclosed how many of those who have signed up for insurance have actually paid their first premiums, which is necessary for enrollment to be finalized.
If what we learned about Connecticut yesterday is any indicator, the actual payment rate might be somewhere between 8% and 50%. And I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess that young, healthy people might be somewhat less inclined to pay up than older, sicker people. And if the young people who are signing up are the sicker young people, then the actuarial math becomes even worse.
Just don’t call it a death spiral.