Obamacare graph of the year

So much rhetoric has been flying around about the Affordable Care Act.

But I’m a data person. Show me the numbers and then we can see what’s going on.

Here is my Obamacare graph of the year.

You can find it and the spreadsheet used to generate it at acasignups.net. All data comes from federal and state sources.

Keep in mind that the graph does not reflect all December signups, as the full data for these will be released in January. But the trend is clear.

By the way, if you live in Maine, you can get insurance that starts on January 1, 2014, if you buy a plan offered by Maine Community Health Options by December 31, 2013. And you can see all your options, with details about coverage, costs, and financial aid at healthcare.gov.

Unfortunately, because Gov. LePage refused to expand MaineCare, 70,000 Mainers will not be able to MaineCare or will lose coverage. People in the MaineCare gap are ineligible to get financial aid to buy private insurance, so the governor’s decision has a huge impact on their lives.

In any case, here’s the graph.


Based on these data, which do not reflect all December 2013 signups, the ACA has led to 9 million people gaining health insurance, including people who have bought policies through the exchange, those getting coverage through Medicaid and SCHIP, and young people who continue to receive insurance their parents’ plans.

Private plan enrollments are at 26% of those projected by the CBO for March 31, 2014. (By the way, as the spreadsheet used to generate the graph shows, there are big variations by state. The states that have worked to make the law work well have much higher signups than those that haven’t.)

And, as I explained two months ago, when Romneycare launched, early signups were slow. (See that post for a graph showing the rate of signups.) These accelerated sharply right before the deadline for getting insurance.

For Obamacare, the first hard deadline for getting insurance in 2014 and avoiding a fine is the end of the March. Health policy experts believe enrollments will spike as that date approaches, and as health insurance companies ramp up their advertising.


Amy Fried

About Amy Fried

Amy Fried loves Maine's sense of community and the wonderful mix of culture and outdoor recreation. She loves politics in three ways: as an analytical political scientist, a devoted political junkie and a citizen who believes politics matters for people's lives. Fried is Professor of Political Science at the University of Maine. Her views do not reflect those of her employer or any group to which she belongs.