With just three days remaining until individuals must sign up for coverage that begins with the new year, new delays and exceptions to the law are emerging.
Just yesterday, the Administration indicated that it would extend a so-called “hardship exemption” from the individual mandate for people whose existing policies are being cancelled by their insurers. Additionally, they will be allowed to purchase catastrophic coverage – an option previously allowed only for individuals under 30.
The number of people this would affect, however, is certainly up for debate. Some have claimed that cancellations will ultimately leave more uninsured than the number of individuals expected to sign up for coverage through the health insurance marketplaces. The Administration, on the other hand, has estimated that fewer than a half a million people with cancelled policies have not yet found alternative coverage.
So, what does this mean for the ultimate success of the Affordable Care Act? The President and the HHS Secretary say these latest changes allow for a smoother transition, but not unlike most of the issues during this roll-out period, challenges, delays, and exceptions all potentially chip away at the broad pool that makes health insurance work efficiently. To read more about why enrollment is so important, click here