What’s really noteworthy, based on the initial enrollment breakdown by state, is that Florida, a state whose residents boast one of the highest median ages out of the 50 states, has signed up the most people by a mile.
Total enrollment on HealthCare.gov through week four equated to 2.04 million, with Florida enrolling nearly 445,000 people by itself. The next closest state was Texas with just shy of 225,000 enrollees. All told, Florida’s contribution is just shy of 22% of all HealthCare.gov enrollees in the early going.
Age very well could be playing a part in these figures.
Florida is older and sicker than the rest of the nation, and — surprise! — accounts for a hugely disproportionate percentage of this year’s enrollments. The Motley Fool’s Sean Williams writes this up with a no-big-deal sangfroid, but in fact these figures are very bad news for the solvency of ♡bamaCare!!!’s insurance exchanges.
The problem from the beginning has been that ♡bamaCare!!! needed to get 40% of its customers from the younger & healthier crowd, in order to take in enough premiums to cover the older & sicker customers who can’t be denied coverage. But the percentage of younger & healthier customers has been down at around 28%. It had been hoped that this year’s non-compliance penalty (“It’s a tax!”) would induce more younger & healthier people to pay up, but this report indicates that might not be the case.
It’s still too soon to say “death spiral,” but Healthcare.gov appears to be short of breath while slowly spinning around.