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There are many factors that influence health insurance rates. Of course, individual characteristics take precedence. However, insurers also look at a particular location’s uninsured population and its overall health performance. And although Minnesota’s uninsured rating went down nearly half from 2010, while ranking first in a health study, its residents who participated in the 2017 open enrolment still noticed high increase rates. This doesn’t mean you won’t find health insurance that’ll fit your budget and requirements though. As long as you enter the market educated, you’ll have higher chances of securing a good deal on your coverage.

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Minnesota: Besting 50 other places in health performance

In the recent Commonwealth Fund’s State Health System Performance study conducted in 2015, it revealed that MN had the best health performance in all of the country. It ranked first overall, receiving scorecards of quintile 1 for all the indicators, namely: “Access,” “Prevention & Treatment,” “Avoidable Health Use & Costs,” “Healthy Lives,” and “Equity.” This has possibly helped keep the rates from increasing exorbitantly. Here are some notable findings regarding the overall health of the state’s residents:

  • Mortality amenable to healthcare: 56 out of 100,000 people

  • Breast cancer fatalities: 19.6 out of 100,000 women

  • Colorectal cancer fatalities: 12.8 out of 100,000 individuals

  • Percentage of adult smokers: 16%

  • Adult obesity: 27%

  • Obesity in children aged 10-17: 27%

The organization also provided statistical comparisons between the state and the country, including the following:

  • 8% of adults (19 to 64 years old) don’t have insurance, compared with the national average of 15%

  • 4% of children (infants to 18 years old) are uninsured, as opposed to the countrywide average of 6%

  • 9% of the adult population chose not to obtain insurance due to the high costs associated with it (the same with the US average)

  • 12% of adults had expensive out-of-pocket medical bills, 2% higher than the national average of 16%

Types of coverage to choose from

The specific type of coverage, called metal tier, you get will dictate your out-of-pocket expenses when paying for medical and hospital bills.

Bronze – 60%

Silver – 70%

Gold – 80%

Platinum – 90%

Bronze
Silver
Gold
Platinum

Take a look at these projections from the United States Department of Health & Human Services so you’ll have an idea on how much you may have to pay towards your coverage this year:

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income): $340

  • Second-lowest silver after advance premium tax credit (for a 27-year old with a $25,000 household income): $142

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a family of four with a $60,000 household income): $1,396

  • Second-lowest silver before advance premium tax credit (for a family of four with a $60,000 household income): $405

The huge difference in the state’s uninsured rating

If the Land of 10,000 Lakes continued to retain its 9.1% uninsured rating back in 2010, the 2017 rate increase would definitely be higher than the approved 50 to 67 percent. The considerable decrease in the number of people in the state who don’t have insurance has somehow aided in the control of the rise in rates.

In a U.S. Department of Health & Human Services study, it assessed each of the state’s uninsured rating for a period of five years. According to the study, MN, with an estimated population of 5,489,594 (2015, latest data1), saw a 4.6% drop in its uninsured rating within this timeframe. At the time of the publication’s study, it found that 250,000 more people in the state obtained insurance. 

With trends showing consistent yearly increases in health insurance rates, it pays to secure a plan that will provide you with long-term coverage. Although this will cost you more than a short-term one, it dramatically reduces your risk of facing medical bankruptcy that arises from the expensive cost of medical and hospital services.

References:

https://www.healthinsurance.org/minnesota/

http://datacenter.commonwealthfund.org/scorecard/state/25/minnesota/

https://aspe.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/212721/2017MarketplaceLandscapeBrief.pdf

https://aspe.hhs.gov/compilation-state-data-affordable-care-act

1Latest data: The U.S. census is conducted every 10 years as per requirement of the United States Constitution. The 23rd edition and the latest data is the 2010 United States Census. Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_United_States_Census
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