Capsules: Washington Exchange Signups Nearly Triple In Week Two; Shutdown Not Hurting Seniors' Ability To Get Medicare Plan Info; State Medicaid Decisions Cost Community Health Centers; Minn. Reports 3,700 Enrollments Underway, But A Rocky Road For Consumers

Now on Kaiser Health News' blog, The Seattle Times' Amy Snow Landa, working in partnership with KHN, reports on the Washington state insurance exchange: "About 25,000 Washington state residents have enrolled in health plans through the state’s online insurance exchange marketplace during its first two weeks. That figure is nearly triple the 9,500 residents who completed their enrollment during the first week that the exchange, called Washington Healthplanfinder, was open for enrollment" (Landa, 10/16).

In addition, Susan Jaffe reports on Medicare plan information during the government the shutdown: "The government may still be shut down — for now — and federal websites still caution visitors that information may not be up to date while the government is closed. But Medicare beneficiaries do not have to worry about getting accurate details from the plan finder website during the current open enrollment season, officials said" (Jaffe, 10/16).

MPR's Elizabth Stawicki, working in partnership with KHN, reports on Minnesota's exchange tally: "Officials from MNsure, the online health insurance marketplace in Minnesota, provided the first public glimpse into how many Minnesotans have not only created accounts on the new health insurance site, but also committed to choosing a plan and paying for coverage. MNsure officials say about 3,700 visitors to the site are in the enrollment process — they’ve taken the step of selecting coverage through MNsure and are in the payment process if their plans require payment" (Stawicki, 10/17).

Also on Capsules, Phil Galewitz reports on how state Medicaid decisions impact community health centers: "A new study by George Washington University researchers estimates that 518 health centers in the more than two dozen states not expanding Medicaid will lose out on $555 million next year because their uninsured patients won’t get Medicaid or federally subsidized coverage in the new online health insurance marketplaces" (Galewitz, 10/16). Check out what else is on the blog.

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