Tampa increases Obamacare signups by nearly 50 percent
Nearly 114,000 Tampa residents registered for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act as of the end of January, city officials said Tuesday.
That's 37,000 more than during last year's open enrollment period. To encourage registration, the city opened its recreation center to health care navigators for the third straight year, passed out hundreds of fans printed with enrollment contacts at local churches, ran newspaper ads (paid for by Blue Cross Blue Shield) and did two rounds of robo-calls from Mayor Bob Buckhorn (paid for by another nonprofit).
Tampa's results were good for 11th place in a 20-city "Healthy Communities Challenge" organized by the White House to see which city could sign up the highest percentage of people who lacked coverage. Tampa's enrollment represented about 49 percent of its 231,000 residents who lacked health coverage. Milwaukee won the competition by enrolling fewer people overall, but by signing up a much higher percentage (75 percent) of its uninsured population. That means it gets a visit soon from President Barack Obama. The top five cities also included Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit and Oakland, Calif. In all nearly 13 million people signed up for coverage through Obamacare this year.
"In the end," Buckhorn said, "we all win."