Minnesota: Final tally: 116.4K QHPs, 5.8%* ahead of last year!
MNsure ends open enrollment with record number of signups
116,358 Minnesotans enrolled in private health plans through MNsure for 2018 health coverage
ST. PAUL, Minn.—Today MNsure announced that a record number of Minnesotans in the individual market signed up for health coverage through MNsure during open enrollment, breaking the previous year’s record of 114,810. Despite an open enrollment period three weeks shorter than 2017 and significant challenges stemming from the federal level, MNsure enrolled more Minnesotans than ever. Thirty percent of MNsure enrollees were new this year.
*According to these numbers, MNsure beat out last year's enrollment total by about 1.3%...impressive in its own right. But it's actually better than that, because the official 2017 Open Enrollment number according to CMS was only 109,974 people...which means that officially, MNsure has actually outperformed last year by 5.8%!
What accounts for the difference? Well, as I noted a couple weeks ago, MNsure offered a one-week "overtime" extended enrollment period last year to allow for a special, patched-together 25% discount offer for unsubsidized enrollees. Around 4,800 more people took advantage of that extension, but those extra enrollees apparently didn't make the cut in time for the formal CMS report, so 109,974 was etched in stone as the number of record for 2017.
Either way, this makes Minnesota the fourteenth state to surpass their 2017 enrollment total...and the 9th State-Based Marketplace (or at least Federally-Facilitated State-Based Marketplace) to do so.
“Congratulations to MNsure CEO Allison O’Toole, and her tremendous team, for their extraordinary efforts this year! Their hard work has connected a record number of Minnesotans with high-quality, more affordable health insurance,” said Governor Mark Dayton. “This is fantastic news, especially for the many Minnesotans who were able to save, on average, nearly $7,000 with federal tax credits that are available only through MNsure.”
Over 60 percent of enrollees qualified for advanced premium tax credits (APTC) averaging nearly $7,000 a year for households.
“This was MNsure’s most successful open enrollment ever,” said CEO Allison O’Toole. “Not only did a record number of Minnesotans sign up for coverage, but system enhancements and new tools, like the courtesy callback feature, helped make the consumer experience better than ever before.”
Across the state, yearly APTC averages for households were:
- Southeast Minnesota—$12,096
- Northeast Minnesota—$7,692
- Southwest Minnesota—$11,040
- Twin Cities Metro—$4,848
- Northwest Minnesota—$8,100
Over the entire open enrollment period, MNsure took 148,389 calls, with wait times averaging 10 seconds— the lowest in MNsure’s five year history.
“MNsure improves every year,” said O’Toole, “and this year was no different. From top to bottom MNsure increased its customer service and operational efficiency and we are already looking to how we can do even better next year.”
MNsure recently signed a contract with a new technology vendor to make improvements to the current system, and those upgrades will be phased in over the next two years.
Challenges from the federal level this year included the lack of a strong national promotional campaign, which also reaches Minnesotans, Washington-driven confusion about whether enrollment assistance and outreach was still available, as well as a lack of awareness that the individual mandate is still in effect for the 2018 plan year.
BY THE NUMBERS:
- Total enrollments—209,460
- Private health plan enrollments—116,358
- Public program enrollments—93,102
- Percentage receiving tax credits—60 percent
- Average yearly tax credit—$6,912
- Call volume—148,389 calls
- Average wait time—10 seconds
- MNsure.org sessions—1,895,482
- Comparison tool sessions—211,205
The 2018 open enrollment period ran from November 1, 2017 to January 14, 2018. Ninety-six percent of Minnesotans have health coverage—the highest percentage in state history. More information can be found at mnsure.org.
I'm assuming the 93,102 "public program" enrollment figure refers to MinnesotaCare, which had about the same number (93,049) back in November, but I've asked for clarification.