Maryland residents supplied only a small amount of the abysmal number of Obamacare signups during the first week.
A system report for the Maryland Obamacare exchange — MarylandHealthConnection.gov — concluded that from Oct. 1 – Oct. 6, despite the influx of 174,023 unique visitors, only 13,532 accounts created verified identities.
Of the several thousand who created verified accounts, only 326 applicants successfully enrolled in the program — less than 0.2 percent of the total unique visitors to the site during that 6 day period.
The low number of signups in Maryland during the first week is indicative of a larger trend throughout the country.
According to news reports, there are no confirmed enrollments in Delaware’s Obamacare exchange. California, by far the largest state by population, reportedly only enrolled between 16,000 and 28,000 people in the first week, despite having an exchange that is widely regarded as the best in the country. At that rate, it would take the Golden State between five and more than eight years to enroll its entire uninsured population of 7.1 million.
Glitches and design flaws at the Obama administration’s $634.3 million website, Healthcare.gov, made it nearly impossible for the site to handle the high volume of Internet visitor traffic from around the country. (Related: Report: Glitchy Healthcare.gov cost taxpayers more than $634 million to build)
Many visitors reported leaving the website frustrated and confused. The Federal Obamacare exchange, Healthcare.gov, is now down completely, and is not expected to be back online until sometime in the middle of next week. (Related: Obamacare application tool is ‘down’)
Not surprisingly, Healthcare.gov has registered an extremely anemic number of enrollees. The Daily Mail reported on Thursday that only 51,000 Americans signed up for Obamacare in the first week. (Related: Report: A mere 51,000 people signed up on Obamacare site in first week)
It also isn’t clear whether these numbers reflect people who have enrolled, people who have completed applications, or people who have actually purchased insurance — a point on which Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has remained cagey. A report [pdf] on the Maryland site states, “People may ensure their coverage begins January 1 as long as they are enrolled and their first payment is received by mid-December.”
Healthcare.gov accounts for more than 66 percent of the U.S. population. Presuming that 51,000 number is accurate and can be extrapolated to state exchanges, Maryland’s enrollment number accounts for only 0.4 percent of the whole country.