New estimates presented to the MRMIB Board of Directors today suggest the enrollment capacity for the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan to be approximately 24,300. Depending on a number of variables (like how quickly people enroll in PCIP), the federal funding for the program could support as few as 15,400 and as many as 40,400 individuals.
As of the beginning of December, enrollment had increased (by 63% in November) but was still only covering around 800 individuals, a fraction of those that California has been funded to serve. Communities of color and non-English speakers are underrepresented.
The program has done outreach by calling brokers and offering them cash incentives for enrolling people, and has added an outreach tab on their website where materials can be downloaded for people who do not have Internet access.
This rate of enrollment reiterates the great importance of creating a glide path to full implementation of federal reform so that we are ready from day one to take full advantage of future federal funding and opportunities to provide coverage to more people. As we begin to plan for implementation of Medicaid expansion and the Exchange, we must move quickly to ensure access to those who need coverage.
Today’s MRMIB meeting was also significant as it marked the retirement of Lesley Cummings as the Executive Director of the agency. We look forward to working with the Executive Director, once appointed, in order to ensure that the interests of consumers are served in the programs MRMIB oversees.