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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Chris Swedzinski (R)

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Health care costs set to decrease on individual market

Tuesday, October 2, 2018


ST. PAUL – For the second consecutive year, legislative reforms have proven to help reduce or hold flat individual market health insurance rates after years of double-digit increases following the implementation of Obamacare in Minnesota.

The Minnesota Department of Commerce released final rates for the 2019 individual insurance market on Tuesday. All five of the carriers on the individual market are lowering premiums for 2019, with average rates dropping between 7.4 percent and 27.7 percent. For example, reports show a family of four in the House District 16A area could save $5,208 on their premium costs over the next year.

“Legislation we passed this biennium is helping to increase accessibility and bring down health care costs after our state’s system was turned upside down with the arrival of Obamacare,” said Rep. Chris Swedzinski, R-Ghent. “It’s been a long project and much more work remains to bring about systematic reform that is needed for the long haul, but it is gratifying to see that we not only put an end to years on end of double-digit premium increases, but have actually turned the corner with double-digit decreases. This should give citizens optimism and serve as incentive to do even more good work during the 2019 session.”

The individual market serves Minnesotans who buy health insurance on their own, not through an employer or the government.

From 2014-2017, average rates increased by double digits every year, including up to 67 percent for 2017. Due to reforms enacted in 2017, individual market rates for 2018 remained flat or were reduced for most Minnesotans on the individual market. The Minnesota Department of Commerce confirmed last year and this year that without reforms, rates would have risen by 20 percent or more.