Minnesota

2018 MIDTERM ELECTION

Time: D H M S

If it seems like I keep posting Minnesota's latest every few days, that's because...well, frankly, I am, for two reasons: First, they're updating it every few days (almost odometer-like); and second, MNsure is pretty much the only one posting updates on a regular basis (again, Oregon is now the only one doing so more frequently than once a month).

On the up side, those MN numbers keep increasing at a pretty impressive rate, with another 294 QHPs added and 5,848 more added to Medicaid/CHIP in just the past 6 days:

latest enrollment numbers

September 2, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments
Medical Assistance 191,568
MinnesotaCare 69,671
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 54,354
TOTAL 315,593

For some perspective, this means that Minnesota's total ACA exchange enrollments have gone up over 5.1% in just the past 12 days.

Minnesota continues to quietly crank along...

latest enrollment numbers

August 27, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments
Medical Assistance 187,112
MinnesotaCare 68,279
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 54,060
TOTAL 309,451

The Good News: Minnesota, as always, continues to provide consistent, up-to-date enrollment data, adding 56 QHPs over a 3 day period:

latest enrollment numbers

August 24, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 183,503
MinnesotaCare 67,054
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 53,866
TOTAL 304,423 

The Bad News: Up until recently I was only receiving regular upates from 3 states (plus monthly updates from Maryland and random, occasional updates from various other states). For the past few weeks, however, even 2 of those 3 states (Hawaii and Oregon) have seemingly gone radio silent as well. Aside from the next monthly MD update (due sometime this week, I believe), that leaves Minnesota as the sole state keeping their data up to date.

Meanwhile, Minnesota's exchange Medicaid total has now broken the 250K mark and stands at 250,557.

I received the following email from someone regarding small group insurance policies out of Minnesota (emphasis mine):

Maybe not useful to you, but an insurance agent in MN told me he just got quotes for his first three 2015 group coverage renewals: -7.5%, -2.5%, -7.5%.

He's slightly shocked.

I asked if he could provide some further details; so far this is as much as he's able to add:

...He's rural, so those are likely group plans for small businesses, maybe a small school system.  Recent changes have been +8-24%,  so this is a gigantic change.

Three more quick hits...the third one really deserves its own entry, but frankly, I'm too exhausted today and want to get it off the books, so...

Vermont: STATE SIGNS $9.5 MILLION CONTRACT EXPANDING ROLE OF OPTUM IN HEALTH CARE EXCHANGE

Vermont signed a revised contract with the tech firm Optum that expands its role in Vermont Health Connect’s operations.

Optum already had a contract worth $5.6 million for consulting work, and the latest deal, signed Aug. 15, is worth an additional $9.5 million for a total of $15.1 million.

 

...At latest count, Optum has helped the state halve its backlog of coverage changes and information errors from a high of more than 14,000 to roughly 7,000. Also, close to 4,000 people are having billing issues with Vermont Health Connect. There is some overlap between the two groups, Miller said.

Minnesota exchange gets new marketers

The news that MNsure is switching to a new ad team isn't that noteworthy, but check out the reasoning (in bold):

When I updated the Minnesota exchange numbers just a few days ago, they stood at 53,647 QHPs & 240,654 Medicaid/CHIP enrollees...or 294,301 total.

Just 3 days later, the MNsure exchange has tacked on almost 5,800 more people, breaking through the 300,000 mark:

More Than 300,000 Minnesotans Enroll in Quality Health Coverage Through MNsure

ST. PAUL, Minn.—MNsure today announced that 300,085 Minnesotans have enrolled in comprehensive, affordable health insurance coverage through the state health insurance marketplace.

“I’m proud to announce today that more than 300,000 Minnesotans have enrolled in health insurance through MNsure,” said MNsure CEO Scott Leitz. “During the State Fair, we hope to help even more Minnesotans find comprehensive, affordable coverage that meets the needs of their families or small businesses. Be sure to visit us in the Health Fair 11 building and bring your questions about MNsure.”

Minnesota continues to quiet down, with only 110 more QHPs added in the past 4 days, but over 3,200 more added to Medicaid via ACA expansion:

latest enrollment numbers

August 17, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 176,416
MinnesotaCare 64,238
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 53,647
TOTAL 294,301

Not a lot of news this week as the whole country seems to be transfixed by the shooting death of Michael Brown and the insane overreaction by the police in Ferguson, Missouri (as well as the deaths of legends Robin Williams and Lauren Bacall).

However, Minnesota continues to quietly crank along, adding 141 people to the QHP tally and 4,748 to Medicaid in just the past 3 days:

enrollment update

latest enrollment numbers

August 13, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 173,953
MinnesotaCare 63,437
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 53,537
TOTAL 290,927

Minnesota's QHP enrollment rate is starting to slow down again, but ACA Medicaid enrollments continue at a brisk pace:

enrollment update

latest enrollment numbers

August 10, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 170,470
MinnesotaCare 62,172
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 53,396
TOTAL 286,038

Minnesota keeps cranking along, up another 310 QHPs and 4,888 Medicaid/CHIP enrollments in the past week.

latest enrollment numbers

August 3, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 165,740
MinnesotaCare 60,435
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 53,169
TOTAL 279,344

No, I don't plan on posting Minnesota updates every day, but I'm still amazed that they seem to be having no problems doing so with their (supposedly) "faulty" exchange website, while the HHS Dept (as well as the New York exchange) has made an official policy decision not to post any updates for (presumably) the full 7 month off-season period.

In any event, MN's total enrollments went up another 1,200 from Sunday to Monday, with 67 more QHPs and 1,147 more Medicaid enrollees:

latest enrollment numbers

July 28, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 162,449
MinnesotaCare 58,838
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 52,859
TOTAL 274,146

 

Yup, it definitely looks like my "QHP sky is falling" warning from a couple of weeks back was a false alarm...or, as Dan Diamond noted at the time...

The first time @charles_gaba made a forecasting error was when he predicted he made a mistake. http://t.co/4hiufhbVAG

— Dan Diamond (@ddiamond) July 16, 2014

Indeed.

In any event, while there is indeed a small slowdown which seems to have kicked in since the COBRA extensions dropped out at the end of June, it's now looking more and more as though the huge drop I saw the first week of July was mainly a combination of a data entry error in Hawaii and the long 4th of July weekend in general.

Hmmm...as a follow-up to the last Hawaii update, I've taken a look at Minnesota (the 2nd of the 3 states which caused me to issue a dramatic off-season forecast drop). The results are...inconclusive:

latest enrollment numbers

July 16, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 156,032
MinnesotaCare 55,941
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 52,325
TOTAL 264,298

That's 61 more QHP enrollees in 3 days (7/13 - 7/16), or about 20 per day. On the one hand, that's still way down from the 52/day that the state had been averaging from late April through the end of June. On the other hand, it's way up from the 2 (yes, 2) per day that MN was averaging over the first 2 weeks of July.

Hmmm...Minnesota's exchange QHPs continue to grow, but the rate has plummetted over the past couple of weeks, dropping from 52 per day through the end of June to just 31 in the past 2 weeks. While I've been expecting the rate to slow down somewhat, this seems like an awfully large drop for such a short period of time.

Combine this with Hawaii, which reported an actual loss of QHPs and I'm starting to wonder if I've misunderstood how the state exchanges are reporting their numbers. It's possible that they're including people who drop their coverage after a few months as well as those who add coverage, which would result in the official tally holding relatively steady over time. I'll have to look into this...

latest enrollment numbers

July 13, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 154,106
MinnesotaCare 54,877
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 52,264
TOTAL 261,247

The QHP number is identical to what it was a week or so ago; I assume this is just a data entry issue. Meanwhile, both forms of Medicaid enrollment have gone up, by a combined 6,537.

latest enrollment numbers

July 8, 2014

Health Coverage Type Total Enrollments 
Medical Assistance 152,041
MinnesotaCare 53,855
Qualified Health Plan (QHP) 52,233
TOTAL 258,129

As an aside, according to KFF, there were around 259,000 uninsured Minnesota residents eligible for Medicaid (pre-ACA + expansion) prior to January 1st. Assuming none of the 205,896 people who enrolled via the MNSure exchange were renewals (and they shouldn't be, according to the prior monthly CMS reports), that suggests that MN has now enrolled nearly 80% of all eligible residents who weren't already on Medicaid, leaving just 52,000 people to go, give or take.

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