The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is returning to the masses Nov. 15 when open enrollment begins ...but most previous participants aren’t super excited about it. In fact, the majority of them are planning to bail on the exchanges.
A new survey from Bankrate finds that 51 percent of those who used HealthCare.gov or PPACA’s state exchanges during the law’s initial enrollment period don’t plan on using them again during the new enrollment season, citing technology and cost concerns. That's compared to 43 percent who say they will return to the exchanges.
“Households that have already used the health exchanges are just as leery about the new enrollment season as the general public and share the concerns about higher insurance rates and glitchy websites,” said Bankrate.com insurance analyst Doug Whiteman.
Former exchange participants cited their top concerns with the new enrollment period:
Much higher prices for health plans — 43 percent;
Too many people remaining uninsured — 26 percent; and
More technical problems with the online exchanges — 21 percent.
Still, exchange enrollees may be auto-enrolled — the administration this summer announced a new auto-enrollment feature to PPACA plans — in the same plan as last year if they don’t opt out.
Bankrate’s survey results could be indicative of more potential problems for the Obama administration. The lack of confidence in the exchanges and in PPACA health plans, as well as continued consumer confusion, has plagued the law’s success. It may also stifle goals to insure millions of more Americans. Significantly, Kaiser Family Foundation recently found that a whopping nine in 10 of the nation’s uninsured are unaware that open enrollment begins this month.
Open enrollment runs from Nov. 15-Feb. 15.
Slightly more than half of the Bankrate respondents, 52 percent, said they had a good experience on the exchange, while 43 percent said it was bad, including 27 percent who said it was “very bad.”
Despite the negative assessment of the exchanges, the slight majority expressed confidence in the PPACA marketplace, with 53 percent saying they are either very or somewhat confident that the exchanges will operate properly this time around, versus those who are less confident (45 percent).
Bankrate surveyed 588 people over the past month who had used the exchanges.