More American Consumers to Purchase Obamacare Coverage than Expected


The federal government has long estimated that millions of Americans would purchase health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, which officially takes effect in 2014. A new study released by USA Today, however, found that the actual number of participants is likely to be far greater than anticipated, which is great news for Obamacare supporters.

Millions Expected to Use Health Insurance Exchanges

The USA Today study revealed this week that of the 50 states it contacted, 19 provided data to help the publication determine that an estimated 8.5 million people are expected to purchase coverage through health insurance exchanges nationwide.

This number is significantly greater than the original estimates released by the federal government — which at the time stated that the exchanges would receive 7 million new customers for all 50 states under the new law — and doesn’t include data from the remaining states.

The health insurance exchanges were authorized by the Affordable Care Act, signed into law in 2010, to help the uninsured find coverage in their state.

Signing Up for Obamacare Insurance

Individuals who want to sign up for health insurance through so-called Obamacare will have to work through their state’s health insurance exchanges to get started.

Most exchanges will be unique since states have been instructed to set up their own (some states will receive assistance from the federal government to form their exchanges), but they are expected to offer online access for ease in signing up.

Some consumers will be able to qualify for health insurance subsidies that could lower the annual cost of coverage by thousands. Qualifications are linked to an individual’s or family’s income.

Resources are available to educate consumers on the law and health insurance prior to open enrollment, which begins in October. The government offers information via its website, and consumers can also learn more via WebMD’s Affordable Care Act information centers.