Individual Insurance Market Enrollment on the Rise: 3 Key Takeaways

Individual insurance market grew significantly during the first quarter of this year, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation issue brief.

The number of people covered by health insurers' individual market products (including those both in and outside of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act exchanges) rose rapidly between the end of December and March 31, according to the issue brief. It's unclear how much of the growth was driven by exchange enrollment, since it remains unknown how many PPACA exchange enrollees had paid their premiums and had coverage in effect by the end of March.

Here are three key takeaways on aggregate individual insurance market growth between December and March. 

1. The number of people with individual health insurance coverage in effect as of March 31 was roughly 29 percent higher, compared with the number who had coverage at the end of December.

2. Some sizable health insurers haven't yet filed 2014 data. However, if the insurers that weren't included in the initial 2014 filings had similar growth rates to those with available data, that would mean the individual insurance market saw a net increase of approximately 3 million to 3.5 million people, meaning a total of 15 million people would have had coverage in the market by the end of March.

3. Because the PPACA marketplaces saw a surge of enrollment at the end of the open sign-up period, the number of new individual market enrollees could double when later coverage data becomes available, according to the report. This will become clear when health insurers release another round of enrollment data later this year.

More Articles on Health Insurance Coverage:
4 Findings on PPACA's Impact on Insurance Prices, Enrollment Beyond 2014
56% of Uninsured Americans Qualify For Health Insurance Coverage Assistance
66% of Uninsured Young Adults Find Health Insurance Unaffordable, Survey Finds


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