Less than 27,000 people have used healthcare.gov to select an insurance policy. It is unknown how many have actually made a payment.

The Obama administration has finally released enrollment numbers for the Affordable Care Act and they are not good.

According to the administration just over 100,000 people across the country have selected an exchange plan, although many have not actually made a final purchase by paying for the first month. About 3/4 of those come from states that chose to build their own exchanges. Only about 27,000 people selected a private plan via Healthcare.gov. The number of people who have actually started paying for a plan and would therefore be considered enrolled by an insurance company is much smaller than that.

This is a real embarrassment for the administration and highlights their technical incompetence, but it really doesn’t tell us much about the Affordable Care Act more generally. Given that there is no reason to even try to sign up for coverage before the beginning of December it makes sense most people are probably waiting until then, partly hoping some of the technical problems will be fixed. What really is important is what enrollment numbers look like a month from now.

The website has not been working so few people have been able to use it. All these numbers tell me is that Healthcare.gov was a worse website in October, but that is not news.