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Excited to return to Obamacare exchanges? Not so much

Healthcare.gov website homepage on Jan. 8th, 2014.
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
Healthcare.gov website homepage on Jan. 8th, 2014.

A .430 batting average will guarantee you a spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame. In Obamacare's Hall of Fame, however? Not so much.

A new survey finds that 51 percent of people who used the government-run Obamacare health insurance exchanges in the past year say they will not to do so again when open enrollment resumes Nov. 15.

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Just 43 percent of people who used HealthCare.gov, the federal insurance marketplace, or a state-run exchange plan on using such an exchange to shop for 2015 insurance plans, the Bankrate.com survey found.

"I do think the results should be of concern for the [Obama] administration," said Bankrate insurance analyst Doug Whiteman.

"It didn't win over a lot of loyal or happy customers," Whiteman said. "These people are just kind of shrugging their shoulders when it comes to the open-enrollment seasons that's coming," adding that the results were "lop-sided."

However, Whiteman noted that some of the respondents who said they didn't plan on using the Obamacare exchanges "might just let their policy auto-renew," without shopping for a new plan on those online marketplaces.

"We're telling people they shouldn't do that. They should explore any options they might have," Whiteman said. "That is a concern if people are just planning on auto-enrolling the plans they have because that might be a mistake."

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Bankrate's advice mirrors that of the federal government, which has urged current Obamacare customers to select the plan that best suits their financial and health needs.

The Bankrate survey questioned 588 people over the past month who had used the exchanges. That pool includes people who ended up selecting an insurance plan, and those who did not. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.7 percentage points.

Whiteman said people whose household income was less than $30,000 annually were more likely to say they would return to the Obamacare exchanges. About 53 percent of respondents in that income tier gave that answer.

The least likely to return were people in households earning more than $75,000 annually, with just 35 percent saying they'd log on this year to the exchanges and shop for insurance.

Those responses, Whiteman said, reflect the fact that federal subsidies that help Obamacare enrollees pay their premiums are greatest for lower-income people. Those subsidies decrease in value the higher a person's household income goes—so individuals earning more than $46,680, or households of four people earning more than $95,400 do not get any assistance.

Bankate's survey comes about two weeks after another survey, by the Kaiser Family Foundation, found that a whopping 9 out of every 10 adult American without insurance was unaware of the fact that open enrollment begins this month. And two-thirds of the uninsured respondents said they know "only a little" or "nothing at all" about the Obamacare insurance exchanges.

The Obamacare exchanges launched last fall and sold health plans that were effective in 2014, the first year that the Affordable Care Act required people to have some form of health coverage, or pay a fine.

Although the exchanges ended up enrolling more than 8 million people, the first two months of HealthCare.gov and several other state markets were a technological disaster, leaving them unable to sign up significant numbers of customers.

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Slightly more than half of the Bankrate respondents, 52 percent, said they had a good experience on the exchange, while 43 percent said it was bad, including 27 percent who said it was "very bad."

Just 53 percent of respondents said they are either very or somewhat confident the the exchanges will work properly this coming year, while 45 percent were either not very or not at all confident of that.

Another 43 percent of people Bankrate's survey said their number one concern about the upcoming open enrollment period was "much higher prices for health plans."

Another 26 percent were most concerned about too many people remaining without health insurance, and 21 percent said their biggest worry was more technical problems on the insurance websites.

-By CNBC's Dan Mangan