If you want to pre-order multiple copies, discounts and throw-ins galore are available here, as are a complete list of early reviewers’ reactions
Most supporters and critics can agree that the goal of Obamacare was to get more Americans covered by health insurance.
Notices that plans would be discontinued began arriving in consumers’ mailboxes in late summer. No one knows how many of the estimated 14 million people who buy their own coverage received them. That’s mostly because some states don’t keep track.
The Associated Press has estimated about 4.2 million, with the biggest numbers in California, Georgia, Florida and Washington, based on counts from regulators that track the notices and insurers’ statements.
Now some of these people will not have received cancellation notices because their policies were indeed grandfathered. Some will have expiration dates that are not at year end so their policies won’t expire in the tidal wave of expirations hitting America on 12/31.
But millions have received cancellation notices, and only hundreds of thousands have signed up through HealthCare.gov and the state exchanges.
This is “the gap,” the “net-net” of Obamacare at the start of year one. And it is a huge gap and a giant negative “net-net.”
Here’s the latest release from Washington State Health Benefit Exchange. Only 11,742 people enrolled in non-Medicaid plans as of November 14. 32,176 additional applications are “in process.”
How many cancellations went out in Washington State? The best estimate I can find, from the state’s Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler, is 290,000. The deadline to enroll is December 15 for January 1 coverage. Even if many of these 290,000 were re-driected to expanded Medicaid coverage, there still appears to be a huge gap developing in Washington State of previously covered people who will be without coverage come January 1. If illness or accident befalls them between that date and the date they obtain coverage, they face financial ruin of the sort the president and Obamacare supporters.
Real reporters would know this score in every state, and they would be on alert in the country’s emergency rooms and admitting reception areas of the nation’s hospitals on 1/1/14 for the real victims of Obamacare –those who had health care on 12/31, but don’t as the new year arrives.
I will host many experts on Iran today to get at the terrible nature of the deal the U.S. entered into with Tehran’s nuke-obsessed mullahs, but two of them will be novelists, because it requires a fiction writer’s eye to really understand the madness of what has happened.
Finally, the California authorities have been especially forthcoming with data tracking the progress of enrollment. And the numbers are increasingly encouraging.
For one thing, enrollment is surging. At this point, more than 10,000 applications are being completed per day, putting the state well on track to meet its overall targets for 2014 coverage. Just imagine, by the way, how different press coverage would be right now if Obama officials had produced a comparable success, and around 100,000 people a day were signing up nationwide.
Equally important is the information on who is enrolling. To work as planned, health reform has to produce a balanced risk pool — that is, it must sign up young, healthy Americans as well as their older, less healthy compatriots. And so far, so good: in October, 22.5 percent of California enrollees were between the ages of 18 and 34, slightly above that group’s share of the population.
What we have in California, then, is a proof of concept. Yes, Obamacare is workable — in fact, done right, it works just fine.
This is, to put it simply, nuts. Krugman swallows whole the propaganda from CoveredCA.com, but didn’t bother to ask any hard questions about the risk pool that is in fact forming.
HH: All right, now in terms of the goal, I’m sure you guys had goals set at the beginning of the cycle. How many did you expect to have enrolled by this point versus those you actually do have enrolled?
DH: No, we do not have that kind of a goal set as far as week to week, day to day, month to month. Through the open enrollment period, we’re looking at somewhere between 465,000 is the projected enrollment, and then for the end of 2014, we projected enrollment is between one million and 1.4 million.
HH: So I want to understand that, Dana. So by the end of open season, when does that end?
DH: Open enrollment for this initial open enrollment period ends March 31st of 2013.
HH: And so your goal is, of ’14, you meant, I’m sure.
DH: Excuse me. ’14. 2014, yeah.
HH: Your goal is to have 465,000 people enrolled by March 31st of 2014?
DH: That’s correct.
HH: And you’ve got 80,000 thus far?
HH: What was the mix of the 465,000 by demographic? What’s the estimate there that you need to make this pool work?
DH: No, we do not have a figure as far as what we have to have in each particular demographic.
HH: You don’t have an actuarial projection of viability?
DH: No, not in the sense that this is what we have to have in order to make ourselves be able to be sustainable. We do have overall numbers as far as the pool goes. But we are not looking at what we need, people, well, this many people in this particular age, or this particular ethnicity, or this particular language or income, that says that this is what we’re going to have to have to be able to make this a sustainable product.
HH: So on the overall pool numbers, what are those?
DH: Just what I was saying, 400,000-650,000 is the projected enrollment.
HH: But you don’t have that breakup broken down by anything other than projected enrollment?
DH: No, we do not, not that we look at and say okay, this is what we’re going to have to have as far as demographics go.
So the great praise that Krugman is heaping on CoveredCA.com ignores that it is mostly enrolling people in Medicaid and that CovredCA.com has no idea whether its plans are sustainable or even what the mix is for sustainability.
It is the perfect Krugman program –a fact-free, unaccountable, and wildly expensive launch into fantasy land.