24,860 people in Delaware signed up for health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act this year.
This year’s totals reflect a 10% drop in enrollment in Delaware’s Health Insurance Marketplace. That’s after the enrollment period was cut in half and federal funding for advertisement was reduced by 90%.
There was also a 25% increase to Highmark premiums. Highmark is the only ACA insurer in the state.
“I think that was really a tough barrier for people who didn’t qualify for that financial assistance,” said Delaware Department of Health and Social Services spokeswoman Jill Fredel.
But Fredel adds that considering the federal roadblocks, and the increased premiums, this year saw a pretty good turnout.
“I think that really says a lot about the way that people value health insurance, and I think it says there was still financial assistance to help people pay for those monthly premiums,” she said.
Nationally, ACA enrollment numbers on the federal exchange dropped from 9.2 million last year to 8.8 million people enrolled for 2018.
Those who are uninsured for 2018 will still face a penalty on their taxes. The tax overhaul bill signed into law Friday does away with that penalty starting in the 2019 tax year.