November 1st, 2013
12:50 AM ET
9 years 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.

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Notes from a "war room" meeting at the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance between administration officials and contractors working on the rollout of 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. m12345

    I work IT and it is simply a ie that obama cannot generate enrollment numbers before mid-november
    Watch for inflated BS numbers that get "revised down" after long enough time passes for people to just give up.

    November 1, 2013 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  2. hip

    If this happens to any other company or project, people will get fired! Are we really saving money? Or is it just another rip-off that the tax payers have to suffer. The problem I have is that the government paid out hundreds of millions to these guys to get this launched. Somebody is making good $$ on this whole thing.

    November 1, 2013 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |

    The public needs to be educated about Obamacare. Who qualifies, how to decide if you should enroll. How about a community service program by all these 24hour new stations? pbs? no one will adopt if all they know is the rhetoric and not the facts. Simple basic education easily understandable and available to the masses.

    November 1, 2013 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  4. george cook

    This whole thing is a BIG wonder they wouldn't reveal the official number of sign ups!! with only (6) day one and (250 or less ) by day 3 or 4...I don't blame's totally EMBARRASING...for the President and his Legacy Program – his only one... The GOP said it was "Broke" and it "was!"

    November 1, 2013 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  5. Katrina Gepford

    In most cases the state exchanges are working well. That is it is working well in those states where the governors are working WITH the plan instead of against it. Here in Ky. the working poor have had little or no access ever to affordable health care. As of yesterday for the first time ever the working poor WILL have access to affordable health care. 26,000 have signed up!! It is working here. Not one person in Ky. has complained. If it isn't working in some states, esp. those without exchanes it is because they are being sabotaged by conservative groups intent on the health plans demise. Trust me like anything in life, IT WORKS IF YOU WANT IT TO WORK!

    November 1, 2013 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  6. Paul

    "All I know is, coming Jan 1st. My Health Insurance will drop from $950 a month to $500 for my family with a lower deductible and lower co-pay. I did this over the phone. But it doesn't matter if its over the phone, the internet, or mail by pigeons. If its going to save me this much, I'll support it. Thanks Obamacare."

    Interesting that you're about the only comment I've seen like this. Was there angelic music playing when all these miracles happened as well? You also forgot to add "And a big thanks to you, Mr. President!!".

    You Obamabots crack me up.

    November 1, 2013 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  7. dklajkl2jkljklsjkl

    Time to do the only sensible thing. Like every other first world nation. We need to go to a single payer system.

    This whole insurance mess is just a waste of dollars that should be going to health care instead of administration.

    November 1, 2013 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  8. dana

    That's the worst piece of sensational nonsense I've read. "Obamacare" includes "covered California" and every other state exchange, it's not just "". Not to mention "Obamacare" isn't even something you enroll in! What happened to accurate reporting?

    November 1, 2013 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  9. dana

    @coldwarvet- you learned wrong. Subsidies are paid directly to your insurer every month, not when you file your taxes. If, when you file your taxes, you didn't receive enough subsidy, the government writes you a check.

    November 1, 2013 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  10. Katrina Gepford

    I did decide to call in rather than go online as that IS another option, that is here in Ky. I was surprised at the very quick response–Less than 5 min. to contack someone and about 15 to 20 min. to go through the whole process.

    November 1, 2013 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  11. Rei

    Considering that the insurance doesn't kick in until January 1, 2014, I'm surprised that *anyone* actually signed up three full months early. I'd take days or weeks (if not the whole period up to the deadline), to research and compare any plans that I was looking at, not "impulse buy" on day one.

    November 1, 2013 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  12. Matt

    Lol 6 people! Not bad, only cost $660k per person.

    November 1, 2013 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  13. I gots mine

    I don't be know whats wrong wit the American public I giots my insurance for $228. pr month Thank You Mr Obama Yo bes da greatist President ever..

    November 1, 2013 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  14. Me


    People, take a chill pill!!

    Buying health insurance is serious business and people should take their time to review and compare before making a decision they'll have to live with for at least a year.
    Oh but wait, all you liberals said all I have to do is just "call them and get signed up over the phone", but now you say it takes a long time to compare policies. REALLY, THANKS captain obvious, this is what we stated MANY times when the site was first launched!!! You people have NO shame!!! You position chances with the wind.

    November 1, 2013 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  15. Data Driven


    "Interesting that you're about the only comment I've seen like this. Was there angelic music playing when all these miracles happened as well? You also forgot to add "And a big thanks to you, Mr. President!!"

    No less believable than the tales of woe, which, frankly, are really starting to reek of ignorance at best, and sockpuppetry at worst.

    "Can you believe this? I went from a $50 dollar premium to a $900 dollar premium!!!!!! My deductible went from $500 to $120,000!!!!!! My job took away my old plan and they're forcing me on this new one!!!!!!" Yeah.

    November 1, 2013 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  16. bill

    let the people boycott obamacare and it will fail and a legitimate onepayer from whitehouse to no \house cover from cradle to grave is what is right

    November 1, 2013 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  17. David

    If I was sick I probably be the firs one to sign up, but being broke, self employed and healthy....they ain't going to see a dime out of can have my tax return if you want...

    November 1, 2013 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  18. Laura

    I'm not sure how accurate this is. I went to the obamacare website, but discovered my state, CO, had set up a different portal, and enrolled through that. Was my enrollment counted?

    November 1, 2013 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  19. kevin

    What a joke, what a lie.

    November 1, 2013 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  20. 4sanity

    That's no surprise that 1 day after the roll out only 6 people had been enrolled. Why ? Because the data needs to be forwarded to the individual insurance companies, who then have to process/write a policy and obtain confirmation. That's unlikely to happen instaneously – more likely a week or so.

    November 1, 2013 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  21. SCBAMA

    @ Paul....more like Obama kooks. These people will believe anything even after it is a failure. Reminds me of Eddie Murphy in "RAW" doing the routine where he gets caught by his wife with another woman. She said "I saw you with her" and Eddie said " wasn't me". "I caught you in bed with her". "Wasn't me". Then she says "maybe it wasn't you". Catch them red handed lying and they still believe it.

    November 1, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  22. Name Edog

    I don't get it, first the gop shut down the governmentg and put our country in financial jeopardy, a strategy that didn't work, to try and prove a point about affordable health care. Now they are attacking the website as much as possible to try and paint a failing picture. If you have ever implemented a new website you know there will be bugs that have to be worked out and that is normal. Your gop strategies are not working. Find solutions and stop pointing your fingers and people might start to listen. Maybe....

    November 1, 2013 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  23. Jason

    What will Americans do when they finally realize that 70% of their gross earned income is going to one form or another.

    Go on welfare???

    November 1, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  24. Me

    Frank Ewing

    At the end of the day we ALL simply need affordable care. This is BEST accomplished with the LARGEST POOL of people and the easiest way to do it would be to simply provide it for all and get the insurance companies out of it. Just as we need roadways, airline monitoring (FAA), and so much else, we certainly need care at times. National Health Care and a populace working on themselves to get and stay healthy really are the only ways to best provide for all and with LESS, MUCH LESS expense than we do now! People need to remember that an unhealthy nation is VERY expensive!! The slamming of an effort to put us in this direction at least doesn't help,....let's move forward and achieve this instead of complaining so much!
    Actually Frank, I totally agree, I would have been for this law if it was truly universal care, yes for EVERYONE, but the law as is is horrible and a complete failure!!! You don't do something half-done just to get something in place quickly, DO IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME!!!! But then again I would never call myself Liberal or Conservative, I actually think for myself!!

    November 1, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  25. Anonymous

    Why do the insurance companies get a pass when it comes to that lack of choice for helath care coverage. Why does Obama get all the blame?

    Please, only real answers please

    November 1, 2013 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
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