New Delaware health care enrollment numbers released [video]

Delaware is still well short of the goal set for sign-ups under the federal health care reform law.

The latest numbers from the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services show 1,145 people have enrolled and paid their first premiums in the state’s health insurance exchange; 5,732 residents are newly eligible for Medicaid coverage, which was expanded under the Affordable Care Act.  

Years ago, Delaware expanded Medicaid to cover those living at 100 percent of the poverty level.  The new coverage applies all the way up to 138 percent of the poverty level.  DHSS Secretary Rita Landgraf says that Medicaid expansion has provided coverage for more than 1,000 residents as of Jan. 1.

But problems persist for some of those who tried to enroll in the early weeks of the enrollment period, when highly publicized problems plagued the health care exchange website. “Some of those individuals are still experiencing challenges, and we ask them to contact us through,” said Landgraf.

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The state had hoped to enroll 35,000 Delawareans for private insurance under the health care exchange, but so far, they’ve only reached 3.5 percent of that goal.  Another goal was to get more young people covered by insurance, but there’s still a long way to go on that front as well.  So far, residents age 21 to 30 only make up 13 percent of those enrolled.

Open enrollment ends on March 31.

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