In Texas, McChesney
the 10 most populated Texas counties’ numbers and compare them to 2017 enrollment. Denton and Tarrant counties had the largest decrease in overall enrollment at 17 percent, and renewals decreased 18 percent in Denton County and 16 percent in Tarrant.
In 2017, 120,976 Dallas County residents were enrolled in the marketplace. That number dropped to 106,923 in 2018, a 12 percent decrease.
Local organizations’ outreach
The Community Council of Greater Dallas, which serves 56 counties in Texas, helped 1,850 people enroll in the marketplace. It exceeded its goal of 1,550, despite the Trump administration cutting their budget by 14 percent.
Bouton said potential health care applicants struggled most with misinformation — people didn’t know how long open enrollment lasted or if they would qualify for insurance. Despite roadblocks, the council’s application assisters were proud of how many people they signed up for health insurance, Bouton said.
At Dallas’ Los Barrios Unidos Community Clinic, about 85 percent of children who visit have some kind of insurance thanks to the Children’s Health Insurance Program and Medicaid, clinic director Leonor Marquez said. But it’s the opposite for adults — about 85 percent don’t have insurance. The only reason why that number isn’t 100 percent is because the clinic does a lot of health care application assistance, Marquez said.
“Marketplace tends to be seasonal, and this was a short season,” she said. “There was a lot more effort this year because we knew it was going to be a shorter enrollment period. We doubled our efforts, added more staff.”
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