Hawaii Obamacare Enrolls ZERO People During Special Enrollment Period
by Alexander Hendrie, ATR, May 20, 2015
The numbers are in: Hawaii’s Obamacare Exchange enrolled a grand total of ZERO — yes, zero people during its special enrollment period.
The Obama administration had implemented the special enrollment period from March 15 - April 30 to assist individuals who were unaware they would face a tax penalty for not having “qualifying” health insurance. In all, less than 250,000 individuals decided to enroll nationwide meaning that millions of Americans would rather pay the tax than enroll in Obamacare.
While Hawaii enrolled zero individuals and is the worst performing state, it is not alone. Vermont signed up only 97 households, while Rhode Island enrolled just 25 households.
Hawaii’s dismal performance should not be surprising. The website cost taxpayers $205 million but could only enroll 8,592 individuals in year one. Cost to taxpayers per enroll: $23,899.
The state legislature recently rejected a $28 million bailout for the website meaning that a contingency plan to dismantle the exchange and migrate to the federal exchange will be implemented immediately. Unfortunately, taxpayers are not off the hook yet as it is expected that moving to the federally run healthcare.gov will cost $30 million.
Hawaii is not the first website to implode. Oregon’s $305 million exchange was officially abolished earlier this year at an additional cost and of $41 million. The exchange is currently under investigation by numerous federal organizations for how it wasted so much money.
In all, states received $5.4 billion from the federal government for state-based Obamacare exchanges with no strings attached and zero oversight over spending decisions.
With so much money being wasted, the American people deserve an explanation.