Two surveys released Thursday found that only ten percent of uninsured people who qualify for private insurance have signed up for Obamacare, according to The Washington Post. On top of that, only five in ten uninsured individuals have looked into the exchanges or is thinking about looking into them. So, in a nutshell, the people who are signing up for Obamacare probably already had insurance.
Polling over the last few months has hinted toward this. In November the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 40 percent of uninsured Americans had never even heard of the exchanges. And a December poll found that 45 percent of uninsured Republicans would rather stay uninsured than sign-up for Obummercare. But it's March now. In a little over three weeks the enrollment period will (probably) be over, meaning there's not much time left to inform people that Obamacare exists and would help them.
Supporters of the law have set up 4,000 events over the next three weeks to get people enrolled, especially communities that have been underinformed. “Halfway through the enrollment period, there remained a really big information gap for consumers, and more so for communities of color and people of low income,” Enroll America told The Huffington Post. Enrollment efforts to reach Spanish-speaking citizens have also been lacking, especially in larger states like California.
Still, when March 31 comes and goes we probably won't have a clear idea of how effective the healthcare law was in getting the uninsured enrolled. The administration says it hasn't been tracking the number of uninsured signing up. That may have something to do with how bad the numbers are:
CMS' Cohen, asked how many uninsured signing up for ACA: “That's not a data point we are really collecting in any sort of systematic way”— Sam Baker (@sam_baker) March 6, 2014
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.