Enrollment in Utah's Healthcare.gov Marketplace Continues to Climb 

The need for accessible health insurance coverage for Utahns is evident in the rising number of enrollees in Medicaid expansion and the individual market 


For Immediate Release: January 14, 2021

Press Contact: Stacy Stanford | 801-718-6130 

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final numbers for open enrollment, which show that almost 208,000 Utahns selected a plan through healthcare.gov, an increase of 7,650 over last year. This puts sign-ups for the Utah 2021 open enrollment period up 3.8% compared to last year's numbers. 

This year’s enrollment increase is especially noteworthy, due to Utah’s new Medicaid expansion. Thousands of individuals and families between 100-138% of the Federal Poverty Level are now eligible for Medicaid after being eligible for coverage through the healthcare.gov individual market in previous years. For that reason, we anticipated steady or declining healthcare.gov enrollment rather than the almost 4% increase that happened.  

The rising enrollment in the individual marketplace alongside rising enrollment in Medicaid is evidence of significant community need, driven by the COVID-19 health and economic crisis. The continued increase in healthcare.gov sign-ups throughout years of legislative and legal threats is also evidence of the stability and strength of the Affordable Care Act. This is supported by growth in Utah’s marketplace, with more carrier and plan options than last year, at lower premiums. While continued progress is needed to improve health care access and affordability, the safety net provided by the ACA’s marketplace and Medicaid expansion is more important than ever during COVID-19. 

You can see more discussion of Utah’s healthcare.gov marketplace and Medicaid expansion data in this state health policy update slides and recording from our Health Care Solutions for Utahns conference earlier this week.  

Every year, Take Care Utah's health access assisters help Utahns enroll in ACA marketplace coverage for free. In the wake of COVID-19, our team has shifted to virtual work, offering a variety of remote enrollment assistance options. Utahns can contact our team with any questions or issues here: www.healthpolicyproject.org/remote-enrollment-options/ 

“It is clearer than ever that Utahns are benefitting from the protections of the Affordable Care Act, including the coverage options available through Medicaid expansion and the individual marketplace,” said Stacy Stanford, Health Policy Analyst at Utah Health Policy Project. “During a public health crisis with record-breaking unemployment, it is vital that there are options for health insurance coverage available for those between jobs, working in the gig economy, or trying to sustain a struggling small business.” 

Sarah Leetham, Healthy Kids Program Director added, “Many families are experiencing an extreme exacerbation of existing barriers this year while navigating the COVID-19 pandemic; with some facing unemployment, loss of income, and unstable housing, compounded by fear of seeking care due to lack of insurance. Take Care Utah not only connects clients to coverage, but other essential community resources that may be needed during this unprecedented time as well. Marketplace coverage continues to offer families peace of mind, with many qualifying for additional tax credits to assist in premium costs. Take Care Utah has assisted individuals who had Marketplace coverage in previous years, but now find themselves qualifying for the more affordable option of Medicaid! Thanks to the expansion of Utah’s Medicaid programs in January of 2020, there are now more options for coverage in our state than ever before.” 


Take Care Utaha Utah Health Policy Project initiative, is a network of non-profit organizations all across Utah focused on helping people navigate the health care system, from enrolling them in insurance to helping them find a doctor. They work throughout Utah to eliminate the barriers that inhibit people from accessing health insurance, specifically underserved communities. During this time of social distancing, UHPP’s Take Care Utah health access assisters have a variety of remote enrollment options. Find us at www.TakeCareUtah.org and healthpolicyproject.org/remote-enrollment-options/

the UHPP logo

Utah Health Policy Project

2369 W Orton Circle Suite 20 | West Valley City, Utah | 84119
Questions? Email stacy@healthpolicyproject.org 

Follow Us

Having trouble viewing this email? View it in your web browser