ST. PAUL – The Minnesota Department of Commerce on Monday released preliminary rates for the 2018 individual insurance market, revealing that Republican-led reforms could end the four-year trend of double-digit premium increases since the implementation of Obamacare and MNsure in Minnesota.
The individual market serves Minnesotans who do not receive health insurance through their employer or the government.
If approved by the federal government, the Minnesota Premium Security Plan will result in premium decreases for tens of thousands of Minnesotans. In contrast, average rates increased by double digits every year since 2014, including nearly 60 percent for 2017.
“This is great news for families that have been facing soaring MNsure costs year after year,” said Rep. Joe McDonald, R-Delano. “The reforms we enacted are helping us get back some of what was lost when Obamacare was launched in our state. The rate relief is a sign that we are getting Minnesota back on track as a national leader in health care. More work remains, but we are seeing positive results from the improvements we made in the Legislature this year.”
As a result of the reinsurance program, all current insurers will continue serving the individual market next year. In addition to the reinsurance program, Republicans successfully pushed for consumer protections that will provide access to better networks of hospitals and doctors.
According to the Minnesota Department of Commerce, rates could have risen by 25 percent or more without Republican reforms. House Speaker Rep. Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, is sending a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price urging approval of the waiver from the federal government needed to allow the reinsurance program to proceed.
Final rates for the 2018 individual market are expected to be released in October 2017.