Healthcare Emergency Aid and Access Plan Approved

By Susan Closmore, Director of Public Affairs, House Republican Caucus

Last Thursday evening, January 26, the Minnesota House overwhelmingly approved the conference committee report for Health Care Emergency Aid and Access Plan. on a vote of 108-19.  You may CLICK HERE to see the full text of the bill, Senate File 1.

 The bill provides a 25% premium reduction to Minnesotans who do not qualify for MNsure tax credits on the individual market. 

The Plan also includes key Republican-led reforms to

  • preserve care for those receiving life-saving treatments and

  • increase competition

  • increase consumer choice moving forward.

The bill passed the Senate earlier Thursday afternoon with bipartisan support.

This is a first step in a session-long effort to address the problems created by Obamacare and MNsure.

As the first month of session comes to a close, Republican majorities have shown an ability to get things done for Minnesotans and to work productively with the governor.

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Republican-led reforms in the final bill include:

  • Allowing for-profit HMOs to operate in Minnesota (like most states) which will increase options for consumers

  • Modifying stop loss coverage to make it easier for more small businesses to offer affordable insurance to their employees.

  • Providing greater transparency for proposed insurance premium changes by requiring earlier disclosure of proposed rates.

  • Allowing Agricultural Cooperatives to offer group health insurance to their members so farmers and their families can get better access to care and more affordable coverage.

  • Ensuring Minnesota employees can benefit from the recently passed federal 21st Century Cures Act which allows employers to make pre-tax contributions toward employee health insurance costs.

  • Network adequacy reform that will assist in ensuring more options for residents in rural Minnesota.

  • Prohibiting surprise billing to protect consumers from previously undisclosed costs.

This month has been particularly successful for Republican majorities -- first passing $20 million in tax relief (House File 2) and now passing the Health Care Emergency Aid and Access Plan with broad, bipartisan support. 

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