In the final push before the end of open enrollment on March 31, the Obama administration has spent millions to promote Obamacare.
From January to the end of March the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which is administering the president’s signature health-care law will have spent $52 million on paid media for Obamacare.
Meaning, if all goes according to the most recent plan and the administration reaches its revised enrollment goal of six million, taxpayers will have spent nearly $9.00 per signup on advertising alone.
With an average pay out of $17.3 million a month on advertising alone, past months have already seen higher average costs per signup.
In January, 1,146,100 people signed up — meaning for that month taxpayers were on the hook for about $15 in advertising per signup. In February, it cost $18 in advertisements for the 943,000 people who signed up that month. Thus, the first two months of this year have seen an average estimated cost per sign up of $17 on advertising.
With set backs ranging from problems with the HealthCare.gov website to delays in the law and enrollment shortfalls, officials have been racing against the clock to convince Americans — with a focus on younger Americans — to sign up for the exchanges.
Despite the push, Obamacare signups have fallen short of early estimates, to the point that the administration has reduced its enrollment estimate from seven million to six million by the end of March.
Further, enrollment figures released this week showed that in order to reach even the scaled-back goal, the administration will need to convince an additional million to sign up by the end of the month.
From advertisements to executive office appearances and celebrity plugs, senior White House advisor Valerie Jarrett told The New York Times Times the administration is “going to leave no stone unturned.”
“Our goal is to meet people where they are,” she said.