During a news conference this Friday, President Barack Obama revealed that more than 500,000 people have enrolled in Obamacare this month.
Although troubles with healthcare.gov slowed enrollment in the first two months, the half-million sign-ups Obama revealed were all from states using the federal exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act. State-run exchanges enrolled an almost equal amount this month as well, bringing the total to about 1 million.
“The health care website problems were a source of great frustration,” Obama said. “I now have a couple million people, maybe more, who are going to have health care on Jan. 1, and that is a big deal. That’s why I ran for this office.”
The 1 million enrollment figure for December is a clear improvement. In November, almost 1.2 million people enrolled nationwide, with about 365,000 in private insurance and 803,000 in Medicaid, the Department of Health and Human Services reported last week, according to a report from the Huffington Post.
“Millions of Americans, despite the problems with the website, are now poised to be covered by qualify, affordable health insurance come New Year’s Day,” Obama said. “For all the challenges that we’ve had and all the challenges that we’ve been working on diligently in dealing with both the ACA and the website these past couple of months, more than half a million Americans have enrolled through HealthCare.gov in the first three weeks of December alone.”
If the trend continues, it would mean that the December 23 deadline will be met with an impressive surge. According to a report from Covered California this Thursday, California enrollments reached 17,000 a day at the beginning of the week. New York, Kentucky, Connecticut and other states also say enrollments are increasing.