The Department of Health and Human Services Makes Effort to Increase PCIP Rolls
By the close of 2010, the Obama administration had hoped that roughly 375000 healthcare consumers would take advantage of the national high-risk insurance pool, known as the government’s Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan, but enrollment is falling far short of projections. The coverage is meant is a bridge to 2014, when it will be mandated — effectively outlawing discrimination based upon that coverage. HHS is at loss to explain, but the agency is launching a website today to inform. This is a somewhat interesting development because, previously, the administration really never promoted the program. The sudden desire of HHS to do so says more about reaction to GOP efforts at their plans for reform, as opposed to the administration’s initial push for universal coverage under reform.
Essentially, the fed program is an alternative to an expansion of high-risk pools with higher deductibles and premiums which the GOP is proposing to fund over the next 10 years. At this point, the goal of both sources of high-risk pooling appears to be the same. Even with the increased awareness of the federal PCIP program, it’s a little difficult to envision a sharp increase in potential enrollees, as the CBO estimates that the program will have a hard time cracking the 1M enrollee threshold by 2014.