The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report on August 23, 2018 regarding the effect the Trump Administration has had on open enrollment via healthcare.gov for 2018. The Trump administration has made many actions that have affected the outcomes of the 2018 enrollment period, including reducing the time frame from 90 days to 45 days as well as large advertising and navigator funding cuts. The administration also halted the payments for cost-sharing reductions in October 2017, which caused insurance companies to increase premiums.
In comparison to the results from the 2017 open enrollment period, the 2018 enrollment period is lower than the 2017 rate by 5%, which went down from 9.2 million enrollees to 8.7 million enrollees in 2018. Although enrollment was expected to be limited under the Trump Administration, enrollment has been steady, despite the slight decrease.
In regards to the affordability of health insurance plans, premiums for silver-level plans have been increased to make up for the absence of payments to CSR by the Trump Administration. But this has created larger premium tax credits, causing eligible consumers to enroll in bronze or gold plans rather than the silver-level plans.
Another big issue was the main concern about the current state of the Affordable Care Act and the major uncertainty over the direction of the mandate. The Trump Administration has been vigorously attempting to repeal and replace, causing consumers and health insurance carriers to pull out from the marketplace.
Read the original article from Health Affairs here.