November 1st, 2013
12:50 AM ET
9 months ago

Internal notes show paltry initial enrollment in Obamacare

Washington (CNN) - Six people.

That's how many Americans had successfully enrolled in the federal health care exchange by the morning of October 2, according to documents provided to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.


Notes from a "war room" meeting at the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance between administration officials and contractors working on the rollout of HealthCare.gov underscore the beleaguered debut of the online marketplace.

Posted online Thursday by the House committee, the documents indicate that the six enrolled individuals were issued policies from five different insurance companies.

"Healthcare Service Corporation had the two enrollments," the notes recorded.

By the next meeting, held that afternoon, notes showed "approximately 100 enrollments" had taken place since the launch of the federal exchange.

The following morning, the total had increased to 248.

Notes released by the committee's chairman, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-California, do not include official enrollment statistics and represent an incomplete accounting of the enrollment totals, said Joanne Peters, a Health and Human Services spokeswoman.

Again, the department declined to release the number of Americans who have been able to successfully enroll in the exchange.

"We will release enrollment statistics on a monthly basis after coordinating information from different sources such as paper, online, and call centers, verifying with insurers and collecting data from states," Peters said.

Peters reiterated that a slow start does not mean that the exchange will not boast a healthy roll call by the deadline to enroll.

"We have always anticipated that the pace of enrollment will increase throughout the enrollment period," Peters said.

Citing the quiet pace at which Massachusetts residents registered for that state's health program, the spokeswoman remained confident that enrollment totals would tick up as more people learned about the exchange.

HHS remains focused on providing accurate enrollment totals and cannot yet give those figures because of collection issues.

"We have had more than 20 million visitors to the Marketplace, showing an overwhelming interest in Americans learning more about their options for affordable health care," Peters said.

The Center for Consumer Information and Insurance is part of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.


Filed under: Health care • Healthcare • Obamacare
soundoff (701 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    Fair is Fair wrote:

    Look at the bright side – it's doing better than his green energy initiatives!
    ------------------------
    Seriously? The short memory span of the right wing raises its' ugly head once again. VP Candidate Sarah Palin promoted all forms fo energy production, including green energy, during her "drill, baby, drill" stump speeches. The price of oil had peaked at over $145 per barrel and gasoline was selling $5 per gallon or more in most places. Fast forward to 2009 and the rise of Sarah Palin's Tea Party, and suddenly the entire right wing is against green energy. We all know why, too. Some GOP donors would view green energy as a threat to their own profits.

    November 1, 2013 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  2. Jose

    You notice how this administration does not reveal things when they are bad. Benghazi is one, Fast and Furious and now Healthcare enrollments. And when the news does come out the news organizations make sure it is on a Friday so that it is at the end of the week so the story gets low press coverage. Shame on this organization! They are playing politics while people get screwed! Yes of course you want to release numbers in Mid November after elections. Why do not let people really know before elections, afraid you might get screwed?

    November 1, 2013 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  3. visitor

    Does ANYONE get enrolled in an insurance policy in one day, anywhere? This isn't a government insurance policy, these are private.

    November 1, 2013 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  4. Belvarie Varnado

    These are private insurances that are being canceled. But the employer mandate will kick in by this time next year and the estimates (in the ACA , not made up by someone else) is that it will cause 9 million people who have insurance with their job will be canceled and have to shop for a new policy. Also it is starting to affect Medicare Advantage plans. Two companies in two states have dropped their Medicare Supplemental insurance.

    November 1, 2013 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  5. Will10

    6 is bad, but then again the website wasn't working. Id say give it time, as many have pointed out when Romneycare was launched in MA it was rocky was well. Now look it it, much better

    November 1, 2013 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  6. Belvarie Varnado

    I put 9 million but meant 93 million.

    November 1, 2013 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  7. philipwl

    woe to us (the millions who DO have current insurance policies) as we lose our perfectly good insurance and are forced to choose from the Obamacare offerings. I have tried everyday, every hour for the past month to get onto the Marketplace website to check out the options. Never once have I been successful in getting all the way through to see the plans. I think a better job could have been done building the website by putting a gang of monkeys in a room and giving them computers. So, now we hear it's going to get much worse - "of course we expect that more people will try to sign up as we get closer to December 15." OMG

    November 1, 2013 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  8. Would You Look at That

    He and his cohort spent close to $700 Million on a website so six (6) people could rush to it and sign up for health insurance??? That's hilarious. Government efficiency at its finest. This administration is synonymous for 'epic fail'.

    November 1, 2013 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  9. Gunderson

    WOW,
    News Flash. On first day of Obama Care only 6 people enrolled! God created the Heavens and Earth in 6 days. At that rate enrolling the next 300 million, never mind. Obama is going to have to move Heaven and Earth to enroll those 300 million.

    Do you realise, after 100 years of Liberal Progressive Politics there are more people on Welfare than working? Nearly 48 Million on Food Stamps? Unemployment thru the Roof and Tons of Mortgages under water. Now what, Paine in vein with no brain? At least the Scarecrow got a brain.

    November 1, 2013 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  10. tiffinS

    The 20 million hits to the site are probably the same person trying to log on over and over because the site malfunctioned and booted them off...

    November 1, 2013 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  11. Wire Palladin, S.F.

    Don't worry CNN, Fox and RWNJs. The states that set up exchanges to help their own people will put the number over 7 million by the target date. Boehner, the republican congressmen, Fox, and CNN can then get back to doing what they do best, tearing down our government.

    November 1, 2013 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  12. Peoples State of Illinois

    Obama wants chaos and dissatisfaction with Obamacare 1.0. His goal from the beginning was Obamacare 2.0 which will be a single-payer system totally controlled by the federal government. All of us will pay for government insurance and all providers will get government checks. The IRS will be the collection agency. The IRS knows who gives you a paycheck and your bank account numbers. We are already halfway through this nightmare. Welcome to Omerica!

    November 1, 2013 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  13. Me

    Perty soon Dear Leader will be paying people to join.

    November 1, 2013 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  14. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    @ Larry in Houston
    Everybody's got a toolshed or at least a toolbox huh Larry?
    Last year's tools, plural, of choice for the GOP was the economy (which they did everything under the sun possible to crash and stall), Obamacare (ditto), unemployment (even though they "owned" that in 2010 to get elected, and promptly dropped the subject was they got into office).
    We saw how well that panned out.
    The Dems shed is overflowing with tools Larry.
    Let's see if they know how to use them come 2014.

    November 1, 2013 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  15. Winston5

    Gee, if only we didn't have until MARCH 31ST, 2014 to sign up. ...oh, wait.

    November 1, 2013 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  16. may40

    Obama lied, people....(fill in the blank). This administration is over the top controlling and will topple. Everyday the truth is coming out and it's about time the MSM got on board.

    November 1, 2013 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  17. livingston

    Romneycare had very few sign up in the beginning also. By the end of the required sign up time the vast majority of the state was signed up. So what is their point?

    November 1, 2013 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  18. Bobby

    One of those six was me, and I didn't even try to enroll! Never even visited the website!

    November 1, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  19. Jason

    So the govt didn't go to the private sector experts in the first place. But now seek their advice to fix it...Hint: leave healthcare up to the private sector...you can be sure the govt will just waste money, as they already have, lining the pockets of political cronies....

    November 1, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  20. Lynda/Minnesota

    @ Data:

    "But it's doubtful that many have gotten through, given CNN's financial incentives to permit only criticism of the law."

    It is one thing in the course of a cable news organization to completely change directions in a effort to try to bring in new viewers. It is quite another thing to push out the regulars from the good old days who supported this network year after year.

    But, hey. There has been a lot of this pushing around to garner support from the very unruly going on in America lately.

    November 1, 2013 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  21. rh

    Enrollment on the first day a government program is offered, when most people applying are asking for subsidies? Anything more than zero sounds good to me.

    This is NOT how many people applied on the first day, it is how many people were ENROLLED.

    November 1, 2013 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  22. Ken

    "showing an overwhelming interest in Americans learning more about their options"

    No, it has nothing to do with learning about their options. They are showing up because the government is blackmailing them with progressively nastier tax penalties if they don't.

    November 1, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  23. Jason Troxel

    Interested in their healthcare options? Or interested in visiting the freakshow that is this enrollment site?

    November 1, 2013 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  24. drowlord

    I'm starting to see a ridiculous level of spin in the liberal media. Obamacare is now being described as a bipartisan effort. It's has significant differences and compromises from the healthcare bill that Democrats wanted. The worst parts of it were forced by Republicans. Are there actually people that buy this? There was zero input from the GOP, and they've spent virtually the entire last 4 years trying to repeal it.

    November 1, 2013 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  25. areyouforseriousmyboy

    lol they've had quite some time to get this right. This administration is as clumsy as it is stupid.

    November 1, 2013 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
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