Will Social Security income be counted? "The same income that you file in your taxes will be used to determine eligibility," Todd-Malmlov tells Daily Circuit Host Kerri Miller.
Todd-Malmlov: There is a lot of innovation that Minnesota healthcare providers have going on right now, I think that innovative nature will continue to keep costs down moving forward.
Can I use MNsure to find a better deal if I already have employer based coverage. Todd-Malmlov says yes. Anyone can use MNsure. However, you are only eligible for tax credits if you are currently paying more than 9.5% of your income for coverage.
Can I pay for my premiums "tax free" via MNsure like I can though my employers? Todd-Malmlov: Yes, the same tax incentives apply.
Todd-Malmlov, on employer penalties: There is no penalty that will apply to employers that have less than 50 employees.
The Twin Cities premiums found with MNsure are lower than those outside the metro area. "The integrated care delivery systems [in the metro] help keep care lower. Outstate you see more expensive care. ... The reality is that it is hard for insures to be competitive in more rural areas," says Stephen Parente, Director of the Medical Industry Leadership Institute at the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management.
Todd-Malmlov on higher rural premiums: There are a few different reasons. She says some parts of the state have fewer providers and some providers are less innovative than the metro providers.
Todd-Malmlov on enrollment periods:There is an annual open enrollment period where people can adjust their coverage plans. Changes in plans are also allowed surrounding "life events" like a new baby or marriage.
When do you get the tax credit? "Immediately," says Todd-Malmlov.
Hi all! Catharine Richert here. I'll be moderating today's chat with April. She'll be on in about five minutes and will stick around for about a half hour for questions.
MNsure Executive Director AprilTodd-Malmlov has joined us for a half-hour live chat about the new insurance exchange, which will go live on Oct. 1. Prior to taking the helm of MNsure, April served as Minnesota’s State Health Economist and was responsible for monitoring the health care market and informing state health policy related to health care access, cost and quality.
We're going to start with a very basic question that I bet a lot of people are wondering. It comes from Betsy Kroon: Will I still be able to see my favorite doctor using MNSure?
You will be able to see which providers are affiliated with the plans offered and pick the plan that has the doctors you want to see.
If you offer coverage as a small employer through MNsure all your employees can get coverage through MNsure. If they are buying coverage individually, those that live in WI could access the federal exchange in WI.
Ken Koense asked on MPR's Facebook page whether people with preexisting conditions will be able to get coverage through MNsure.
Absolutely. Those with preexisting conditions will be able to pick whatever they want. They can no longer be denied coverage starting in 2014.
Our live enrollment site will be up Oct 1, but people can also use a paper application or get in-person assistance through a local MNsure assister organization or an agent/broker affiliated with MNsure.
Kevin Hawkins wants to know: “If one spouse makes $200,000 per year, and the other one makes nothing, can the second spouse get federal aid to help with premiums?”
No, the tax credits are based on household income so the income of both spouses will be considered.
Kristin Anderson: Can small employers purchase insurance for employees and their dependents on MNsure, or just employees?
Small employers can get coverage for their employees and dependents through MNsure.
During your Daily Circuit discussion it was mentioned that premiums outside of the metro area are higher. Steve wants to know if this is true for the Mayo system as well that serves a growing part of rural Minnesota.
Premiums do vary by geography for a variety of reasons including health care provider networks, rates providers have negotiated with insurers, utilization patterns, etc.
On Facebook, Matt Rose asked if MNsure plans also cover dental, vision, mental health, and prescriptions?
Mental health and prescription coverage will be offered through all plans. Some plans will also offer vision and dental and individuals can also buy separate dental only plans through MNsure.
To get the tax credit you need to buy coverage offered through MNsure.
Christine wrote on the Statewide blog that she’s confused about the coverage levels:
“When you say the platinum level covers "roughly 90% of the costs", are you saying that all services will incur "roughly" a 10% co-pay?...I'm confused just how the coverage levels will operate as compared to standard employer provided policies with deductibles, co-pays and out-of-pocket maximums.”
Plans will continue to have deductibles, co-pays, etc as they do today. The metal levels categorize how much that is. For a 90% platinum plan on average the plan would cover 90% of the costs and the individual would pay 10% of the costs through deductibles, co-pays, etc.
It depends. Access to tax credits depends on whether you claim him on your taxes and whether the premium for the plan offered by his employer is more than 9.5% of his income.
Fran Sepler wants to know how private data will be protected once she enrolls in a MNSure plan.
MNsure is complying with stringent state and federal data privacy laws and when individuals are asked to share information through the application process they will be told how the information will be used throughout various steps in the process.
Short term policies will no longer be available in 2014, but you would be able to drop the policy purchased through MNsure if you get a job with coverage since that is considered a life event change.
You can see prices now on our website and you will be able to choose a plan starting Oct 1. www.mnsure.org
That wraps up our live chat. Thanks to April for stopping by and answering questions. Learn more on mnsure.org.
Thanks everyone for your questions. April will join us again after the plan prices are available (Oct 1) to answer your additional questions about MNsure plans.