SAINT PAUL, Minn. — The Minnesota Department of Commerce today released finalized rate increases for the health insurance companies selling individual plans in 2017. In response, the Land Stewardship Project, Minnesota Nurses Association, TakeAction Minnesota and the Greater Minnesota Health Care Coalition released the following joint statement:
“The 50 to 67 percent rate increases for individual health insurance plans are outrageous and clearly unsustainable for the 275,000 Minnesotans who have no other place to get healthcare coverage. These price jumps come on top of large increases last year. It can’t continue.
“The cost of health insurance is hurting Minnesotans across the state, particularly farmers, other self-employed people, small businesses and rural Minnesotans. Every one of us needs medical care in our lives, and we must build a system that fairly shares the cost of covering those who have the most significant healthcare needs. Right now, these costs are being unfairly shouldered by people with individual insurance plans. If these cost increases were being felt by all Minnesotans, it would not be tolerated for a minute.
“The individual market is showing that relying on insurance companies to deliver the healthcare people need is not working, and it is the corporatized system that is the problem. Insurers are not focused on providing quality care at prices that make sense, but on protecting their bottom lines at the expense of people.
“People should look to buy a plan through MNsure to get access to tax credits to lower their premiums, but the Minnesota Legislature absolutely must address the unacceptable costs of individual health insurance and build a system that provides quality, affordable care to all Minnesotans.”