More Coloradans Enrolled In The State Health Insurance Exchange This Year

Brennan Linsley/AP Photo
An employee of Connect For Health Colorado, the state’s health care exchange, explains options and procedures to a walk in client signing up for insurance on the last day before fines are imposed, in Denver, Monday March. 31, 2014. Colorado has already exceeded baseline federal goals for enrollment.

Almost 180,000 Coloradans signed up for 2021 individual health insurance during open enrollment through the state's exchange, according to initial data released by Connect for Health Colorado.

That’s roughly 8 percent more than enrolled for 2020 insurance, according to an analysis from the exchange. Almost 70 percent of customers who enrolled in a 2021 plan qualified for financial help to reduce their monthly premium.

“I’m pleased that so many people took advantage of this year’s enrollment period,” CEO Kevin Patterson said in a press release. “It’s essential that we all have health coverage in place to protect ourselves and our families this year.”

The exchange is used primarily by people who do not have insurance offered to them through work, or qualify for government-backed insurance like Medicaid or Medicare.

Outside the open enrollment period, Coloradans can still sign up for a health plan through the marketplace. That's if they experience a qualified life event, including losing job-based insurance, losing Medicaid coverage or certain family and income changes.

Connect for Health Colorado is a public, non-profit institution established during the national push to expand access to privately-run health insurance through the Affordable Care Act.

In 2011, the Colorado General Assembly set it up to create a health insurance marketplace. In 2013, it began helping individuals and families compare and buy plans, as well as apply for financial help.