The 2017 rates on insurance plans offered through the MNsure program were announced Friday by the
The rate increases will only affect the 5 percent of Minnesotans who buy their own health insurance through the MnSure exchange and who do not get it from their employer.
Two companies will provide coverage in the Mankato region next year: Blue Plus, which will increase its rates an average of 55 percent; and
Blue Plus is the only provider that isn't instituting a cap on enrollments.
Minnesota Commerce Commissioner
"Often times the increase is offset by that," she said of the tax credits. "There's a silver lining here if people take some time to investigate."
The credits aren't enough, Rothman said in a statement.
"While federal tax credits will help make monthly premiums more affordable for many Minnesotans, these rising insurance rates are both unsustainable and unfair," he said. "Middle-class Minnesotans in particular are being crushed by the heavy burden of these costs. There is a clear and urgent need for reform to protect
Rates for small companies purchasing insurance for their employees through MNsure will increase less substantially. One PreferredOne option is decreasing 1 percent while the average increases for the other nine options range from 1 percent to 18 percent.
The rate hikes are just one of the reasons this enrollment period is different than previous years. The departure of
About 20,000 of the 100,000 who lost coverage from
O'Toole, who visited a broker enrollment center in
"There's a lot of loyalty with
She said many of those former Blue Cross policy holders will now be turning to the ACA market.
"The majority of them -- maybe the vast majority of them -- will be shopping for the first time in a post-ACA environment," O'Toole said. "So they haven't been at our doorstep before."
She said many of those former Blue Cross policy holders are in the southern part of the state.
"I also am going to focus a lot of my time in southern and southwestern
With the exit of
Friday's announcements prompted plenty of partisan finger-pointing among state legislative leaders.
"We've been seeing the smoke for years, but now the house is burning down," said a statement from Senate Republican Leader
Republican representatives, including Rep.
"Forcing struggling families to go through a website with hours-long waits on the phone for assistance and weeks or months to get an insurance card will only compound the pain of massive premium hikes," the letter states.
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