12/19/2012 10:14:43 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: John Pollard
Legislative and Communications Director
ST. PAUL, MN - Minnesota Management and Budget (MMB) announced today that the Minnesota has received conditional approval from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to build a new health insurance exchange to serve Minnesota individuals, families and small employers. The /assets/NEWS-2012-12-20HHSapprovalLetterGovernor_tcm34-182085.pdfapproval letter from HHS is available here.
"I'd like to thank our stakeholders, who have dedicated countless hours of effort to frame the various policy options, for helping us achieve this significant milestone," remarked Commissioner Jim Schowalter. "This designation gives us added affirmation to move forward to the next step of working with legislators to pass a bill early in the 2013 session. As we proceed, we will continue to seek stakeholder and public input on creating an Exchange that best meets the needs of Minnesotans."
Minnesota submitted an application to HHS on November 16 asking for conditional approval to build state based exchange. Application documents can be viewed online.
Exchange Executive Director April Todd-Malmlov added, "Receiving HHS approval affirms the direction of our planning to date and for the coming months, as we work to implement an exchange that best serves the needs of Minnesotans and capitalizes on the unique and innovative strengths of our health care system."
The Exchange is a one-stop health insurance marketplace where individuals, families and small employers will be able to get quality health coverage at a fair price. The Exchange will empower more than 1 million Minnesotans to choose the health insurance they need at a price they can afford, saving $1 billion every year on health care costs. It will facilitate enrollment in public health care programs and private insurance products, provide premium tax credits to lower the cost of health insurance for individuals and small businesses, and allow Minnesotans to shop and compare between insurance products. The Exchange will also provide information on quality of health insurers and health care providers.
Enrollment in the Minnesota Health Insurance Exchange begins October 1, 2013. For more information about the new online health insurance marketplace, how it will benefit Minnesota consumers and businesses, and how to provide input or learn more about the stakeholder process visit www.mn.gov/HealthInsuranceExchange.