State holds health care public hearing

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Section 1332 of the Affordable Care Act permits a state to apply for a State Innovation Waiver to pursue innovative strategies to provide its residents with access to high-quality, affordable health insurance.

Earlier this year, the Minnesota Legislature enacted a law that creates the Minnesota Premium Security Plan, a state-based reinsurance program designed to stabilize premiums in Minnesota’s individual health insurance market. The new state law calls for the Commerce Department to submit a Section 1332 State Innovation Waiver application and, as required by federal regulations, make the draft application available for public review and comment.

If granted, the State Innovation Waiver would allow Minnesota to secure partial federal funding for the Minnesota Premium Security Plan, while preventing a loss of federal funding that helps support the MinnesotaCare public health insurance program.

The Commerce Department will convene several public information meetings about the draft waiver application. Each meeting will include a presentation about the draft application, followed by time for questions and comments. In Duluth the meeting is 10 a.m. to noon on Monday, May 8 at the Duluth Public Safety Building, 2030 N. Arlington Ave.

The draft application may be viewed and downloaded at mn.gov/commerce/industries/insurance/reinsurance/index.jsp. Copies of the draft application will also be available at the public information meeting.

Comments may be submitted in writing or presented orally at the meeting. Written comments, which will be available for public review, will be accepted until the close of business on May 26.