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RELEASE: Rep. Grossell Statement on Minnesota Republican Reforms Reversing Obamacare's Double-Digit Premium Hikes

Monday, July 31, 2017

ST. PAUL, MN—On Monday the Minnesota Department of Commerce released preliminary rates for the 2018 individual insurance market, revealing that Republican-led reforms may 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. 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.

These reforms were supported by just one Democrat in the Minnesota House. Governor Dayton refused to sign the measure, opting to let it become law without his signature.

“This is good news for Minnesota families, especially those of us in Greater Minnesota, who have faced double-digit rate increases under Obamacare and MNsure,” said Rep. Matt Grossell, R-Clearbrook. “Republicans in the Minnesota Legislature put a priority on health care reform and with this news we are already seeing results to lower costs and increase access. There is more work to do, but Minnesota is once again on track to be a leader in health care.”

According to the Minnesota Department of Commerce, rates could have risen by 25% or more without Republican reforms. On Monday, Speaker Daudt sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price urging approval of the required waiver from the federal government needed to allow the reinsurance program to proceed.

"If Democrats had their way, today we'd be looking at another year of massive increases of 25% or more," said House Speaker Kurt Daudt, R-Crown. "We know Obamacare’s impact is still hurting Minnesota families, but we’re proud to take initial steps toward stabilizing the market, lowering costs, and successfully keeping all insurers in the individual market for next year."

Final rates for the 2018 individual market are expected to be released in October 2017.