Healthcare.gov

Affordable Care Act enrollment falls 4%

A health insurance broker helps a woman sign up for health insurance.
Fewer people signed up for ACA coverage for 2019. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The Affordable Care Act's open enrollment period for 2019 is over, and almost 8.5 million people signed up for health insurance in the 39 states using the federal HealthCare.gov website — down about 4% from last year's open enrollment.

The big picture: Expensive premiums, low unemployment, people shifting into Medicaid and some Trump administration moves all contributed to the lower enrollment figure. However, other states still need to report their ACA signups, and it'll be just as important to watch how many people in this market pay their first premium.

HHS edited HealthCare.gov to prioritize private enrollment options

Healthcare.gov homepage
HealthCare.gov homepage. Photo: Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images

The Health and Human Services Department edited HealthCare.gov in a way that seems to subtly steer people toward other, private enrollment options, according to a review by the Sunlight Foundation.

Details: The edits, which were made roughly two weeks into the six-week enrollment period, affect the “How to Apply & Enroll” page on HealthCare.gov.