State officials this morning (11am) release information on 2019 health insurance rates for Minnesota’s individual and small-group markets. These will be overall average rates for 2019. Individual consumers will be able to get actual quotes for themselves and their families in a couple weeks. MNsure’s Christina Wessel says, “We’ll have those new rates up in our on-line plan comparison tool by mid-October, so consumers can kind of do their window shopping before open enrollment starts on November 1st.”
For 2018 health insurance rates for the individual market ranged from basically no change to as much as a 38 percent drop. Officials estimate “reinsurance” legislation passed by state lawmakers kept this year’s rates 20 percent lower than they would have been. The reinsurance program remains in effect for 2019.
Individual consumers can buy policies directly from health insurers, but if they’re eligible for tax credits, the only way to get those credits is by purchasing on the MNsure exchange. Wessel says, “Financial assistance, those really critical tax credits, are still going to be available to help families afford comprehensive health insurance. They make such a huge difference.” She says for 2018 the average family in Minnesota qualified for nearly seven thousand dollars in tax credits.
Wessel adds MNsure has about a thousand brokers and “navigators” around Minnesota to provide free, in-person help. Brokers can help people with purchasing private health insurance plans. Navigators can assist with those eligible for Medical Assistance and Minnesotacare.
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