Obama to meet with healthcare leaders

President Obama is scheduled to meet with health insurance executives and state insurance commissioners on Thursday, just two days after ObamaCare's special enrollment period officially closed.

The meetings, which will include at least one photo op, are a chance for the White House to telegraph unity with health insurance companies and state regulators involved with the rollout of the healthcare law.


The announcement of new enrollment figures was also expected separately on Thursday. It is possible Obama could reveal the numbers before one of the two meetings.

Total exchange enrollment is likely to have risen since last week, when Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen SebeliusKathleen Sebelius Senate outlook slides for GOP CNN to feature teen climate activist Greta Thunberg in coronavirus town hall Jerry Moran: 'I wouldn't be surprised' if Pompeo ran for Senate in Kansas MORE said 7.5 million people had enrolled in the new insurance exchanges.

The Obama administration is riding high after exceeding an original enrollment goal for the system despite persistent glitches with HealthCare.gov last fall.

Federal health officials originally aimed to enroll 7 million people in the marketplaces.

While the administration has surpassed this goal, major questions about the enrollees remain unanswered, including how many have paid their first premium, how many are young and healthy and how many are in each state.

The Health Department has also not reported how many people were previously uninsured, a key metric for measuring the healthcare law's impact in its first year.

Insurance companies have reported that 80 to 90 percent of new exchange enrollees have activated their coverage by paying for it.

In addition, insurers reported that the number of young and healthy people picking plans within the system accelerated as the clock ticked down to March 31, the official enrollment deadline.

It is unclear whether this trend will be enough to keep prices stable on the marketplaces next year.

The administration is hoping to use its influence to prevent substantial premium hikes that could alienate consumers starting in November.

Vice President Biden will also take part in Thursday's meetings.