- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 2, 2014

While the nation focuses on the 7 million people who selected a plan on the Obamacare exchanges, there are millions more newly insured people who are “hiding in plain sight,” The New York Times said.

The newspaper reported that many more Americans bought insurance off the exchanges this year and will enter the same risk pools, meaning they have the same impact on the law’s financial success as the people who logged onto the health care law’s federal and state-based portals.

“These lives count every bit as much as the ones that came in through the exchange,” Gary Claxton, a vice president and health care expert at the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, told the newspaper.

These enrollees tend to be wealthier, because government subsidies are only available to people who use the Obamacare exchanges.

All insurers must comply with new coverage standards this year under the health care law, whether the plans are on the exchanges or off, so it doesn’t matter how their customers get to them, The Times reported.

Some of the people buying off-exchange plans had their plans terminated last year and signed up for new plans through the same insurer.

Others, who have grandfathered plans or who were allowed to renew noncompliant plans, will enter a different risk pool.