More than 218,000 Ohioans enroll for healthcare

By Brandon Klein -

The number of consumers signed up for Marketplace coverage surged to more than 8.2 million nationally, including 218,047 in Ohio as of Dec. 19. Those who selected a plan by December 17 or were auto reenrolled will have coverage effective January 1, 2016. High consumer demand as we neared the enrollment deadline for January 1 coverage, as well as the automatic renewal process, contributed to this overall total.

“Millions of Americans will start 2016 with the quality and affordable health coverage they want and need to keep their families healthy and financially secure,” said Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell. “We are encouraged by the strong start we experienced in the first half of Open Enrollment for 2016 coverage, and know we have ongoing work to do. We are focused on making sure Ohio families looking for coverage understand their options through the Marketplace, know about the financial assistance available, and have access to the support they need to enroll.”

These data, for the first time, reflect the vast majority of consumers who were automatically re-enrolled into 2016 coverage. The re-enrollment process has not yet been completed so as it continues, upcoming snapshots will include additional consumers who were automatically re-enrolled after December 19. If a consumer realized after the deadline for coverage starting January 1 that there is a better plan for their family, they can come back and make a change any time before the end of Open Enrollment on January 31, 2016.

Open Enrollment for 2016 health coverage at began November 1, 2015 and individuals can still enroll in coverage through January 31, 2016. Consumers should visit or to review their coverage options, learn about what financial assistance is available, or to sign up or re-enroll in a plan that best meets their needs.

Having health insurance when you can afford it is now the law. If someone chooses not to buy health insurance and could afford to do so, they are at risk of paying a fee of $695 or more.

By Brandon Klein

Reach Klein at 419-468-1117, ext. 2048 or on Twitter at @brandoneklein.

Reach Klein at 419-468-1117, ext. 2048 or on Twitter at @brandoneklein.