The post appears intended to spread awareness that the open enrollment period for Affordable Care Act health care coverage for 2019 ends
However, 11 states and D.C. offer health coverage through individual marketplaces, and more than half of them have extended their deadlines beyond that date anywhere from
So far, D.C. and six states --
* District of
The other five states --
In most cases, enrolling after
The recent viral post also self-admittedly attempts to trick Facebook's algorithm by starting with two sentences unrelated to ACA: "Congratulations! Huge life announcement that I'm so excited to share with you all!" As explained in the post, "We are posting this and using the word Congratulations so it gets posted more frequently, via the FB algorithms."
Details on how Facebook's news feed algorithm operates are largely a secret.
Rumors that the word "congratulations" helps trigger Facebook date back to at least 2014, according to a story by The New York Times; however, the claims regarding "congratulations" being used as a trigger word for Facebook's algorithm say that the word must be used in the comments section, not the main post.
In fact, other words and phrases within the post (such as the plea: "Please *COPY AND PASTE* and post publicly") may actually be flagged by Facebook as spam, burying the posts in news feeds instead of bolstering them. Facebook's algorithm changes often, usually without any public notice.
Here's a look at a few of the other statements made within the Facebook post that's been making the rounds.
"If you don't act by
For states with a
"The 2019 ACA (Affordable Care Act) enrollment period has been shortened from 90 days to 45 days."
The ACA enrollment period through Healthcare.gov was shortened to 45 days (
Due to Covered California's early start date,
"Someone you know may desperately need health care and the smaller the pool, the higher the premiums."
This is not always the case. According to the
"Just as a pool with healthy individuals can result in lower-than-average premiums, a large pool with a large share of unhealthy individuals can have higher-than-average premiums," a frequently asked question page about risk pooling on Actuary.org says. "Attracting younger adults and healthier people of all ages ultimately will help keep premiums more affordable and stable for all members in the risk pool."
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