2015 OEP: Insight into consumer behavior

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As the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) second individual market open enrollment period (OEP) came to a close in February, McKinsey’s Center for U.S. Health System Reform conducted our seventh national online survey to discern insights into how the individual market has evolved.

We surveyed a nationally representative sample of ~3,000 qualified health plan (QHP) eligible uninsured and individually insured consumers (excluded employer-sponsored and Medicaid-eligible) to find out what actions they reported taking during the 2015 OEP (e.g., how they shopped for, and evaluated, various plans, whether they decided to enroll or go uninsured). We also learned about their awareness of potential subsidies and penalties and other factors influencing their actions. 

All findings reflect the rapidly evolving individual market through February 24. These self-reported findings cannot be directly compared to publicly reported exchange enrollment data. We have based our findings on how respondents described their behavior, attitudes, and demographics, and the descriptions may naturally include some subjectivity. Yet, our sample size and the answers provided to the detailed questions we posed provide useful insights into the individual market’s evolution.

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