The Minnesota Council of Health Plans has worked for more than 30 years to improve care for everyone. We work with local health insurance companies that serve communities, not Wall Street shareholders, to make sure Minnesotans get the care they need, today and in the future.
People who buy their own insurance need stability
Over the past five years, Minnesotans who buy their own insurance have experienced unprecedented changes that make it difficult to budget for the care they need.
Between 2014 and today, medical bills have been difficult to predict. In 2015, medical bills for independently insured Minnesotans soared to an average of $483 per month, then dipped to $351 per month in 2017, then increasing again last year to $369 per month.Those dramatic swings in per-person medical bills led insurance companies and state increase premiums. Those increases stopped in 2018, and again in 2019, when on average the state’s premium security program, also called reinsurance, helped lower premiums people pay each month by 20 percent on average.
Consistency is the key to making sure Minnesotans who buy their own insurance can predict how much to budget for their health care from one year to the next. Policymakers in Saint Paul can help protect against unpredictable health insurance expenses by extending reinsurance, a program that’s proven to work. Reinsurance doesn’t make health care less expensive. But it does a lot to keep health insurance premiums from rising.
People who buy their own health insurance bear the brunt of uncertainty in health care. Wide swings between unsustainable losses and unexpected gains continued in 2018.
The most important thing for Minnesotans to know is that when medical bills aren’t as high as a company expected, the people enrolled get rebates. This part of the law ensures the money people pay for premiums goes for care,” said Patsy Riley, interim president of the Minnesota Council of Health Plans.read more
Star Tribune Commentary
It lowers premiums for people who buy their own insurance and requires no new money.
Interesting National Stories
Health care expenses are more than just the parts you see
In an Axios column, Drew Altman from the Kaiser Family Foundation looks at total family spending for health including taxes and health benefits, and why people need to understand it to assess proposals like Medicare-for-All. Read the understanding health care spending column.
Kaiser has created a calculator to help families learn what they pay, both directly and indirectly for health care. Take a look.
Lost your insurance card? No problem. Want to find out how much you’ll pay or compare prices for care you need? Can you get care online? Wondering how the quality of the care you get is measured?
It’s all here.
Insurance helps you pay medical bills, everything from the entire bill for preventive care that helps keep you well to helping pay for prescriptions and care when you need it. Insurance companies also do a lot of work behind the scenes to help you be well and ensure you get good care.
We all need care—not only medical care when we’re sick or injured—but also preventive care to keep us well. Health insurance is how we join together to pay for care because it’s too expensive to pay for on our own.
From the Council’s Members
What Our Members Are Talking About