The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reported that 99,380 Kansans shopped for insurance in the marketplace and were deemed eligible to enroll in a plan. Of those, 57,013 actually signed up for coverage.
Young adults (age 18-34) made up nearly a third (31.3 percent) of Kansas enrollees. This age group is generally healthier, and their participation in the marketplace helps subsidize costs for their older counterparts. Older adults (age 55-64) and Whites were overrepresented in marketplace enrollment compared to their proportion of the overall population in the state. Alternatively, enrollment from the Hispanic/Latino population was underrepresented.
The marketplace screens applicants for Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and identified 13,961 Kansans potentially eligible for these programs during the period. It is unknown how many of these individuals were ultimately determined eligible by the state.
Subsidies to help pay for monthly premiums were likely a popular incentive for Kansans to shop in the marketplace. Four out of five (78.7 percent) Kansans enrolled in the marketplace received financial assistance through premium tax credits.
“Kansas had 348,000 people without health insurance before the marketplace opened. The question is how many of these individuals were among the 57,013 who actually signed up for coverage during this enrollment period. We don’t know the answer to that yet,” said Linda Sheppard, KHI senior analyst and strategy team leader. “What we do know is that most of the people who enrolled also qualified for financial assistance through premium tax credits, and over half are paying less than $50 per month for their coverage.”
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The Kansas Health Institute delivers credible information and research enabling policy leaders to make informed health policy decisions that enhance their effectiveness as champions for a healthier Kansas. The Kansas Health Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan health policy and research organization based in Topeka that was established in 1995 with a multiyear grant from the Kansas Health Foundation.