MNsure Mails Out Incorrect Information for Enrollees

About 2,300 health insurance enrollees received notices from MNsure this week with incorrect information regarding their 2017 options, reports the Star Tribune.

The information sent out for the upcoming year lists the options that were available in 2016 instead. State officials say this is due to yet another computer error in a long list of technical issues for the various levels of the Affordable Care Act.

This is problematic for consumers as they rush to chose the correct plan. Most MNsure options are likely to sell out due to enrollment caps.

Officials told the Star Tribune that while the notices sent out are incorrect, that the computer records maintained by the state for those 2,300 consumers is correct. Health insurance companies have also been given the correct information.

“This error in the notice does not impact enrollment for consumers,” MNsure said in a statement that was jointly issued with the state’s MN.IT department for information technology services.

The current open enrollment period started on November 1, and 28,000 Minnesotans have signed up for commercial health insurance since then.

“The incorrect notices occurred as a result of a coding problem that incorrectly pulled 2016 data to generate the notice,” state officials said in a statement. “The code has now been corrected and affected enrollees will receive corrected notices in the mail.”

The MNsure health insurance exchange was created to implement the Affordable Care Act. It is available for about 250,000 Minnesotans who buy individual health care policies, rather than receiving their coverage through an employer or government program such as Medicaid.

President-elect Donald Trump has promised to put Congress to work repealing the ACA on Day One of his administration. That is unlikely to have any effect on enrollees in 2017 however. Democrats still hold enough seats to sustain a filibuster of any repeal effort. Even if they did not, Vice President-elect Mike Pence said during the campaign that any changes will allow adjustment time for consumers receiving premium subsidies.

In the meantime Minnesota’s system will have to deal with rate increases of 50 to 67 percent,  and the withdrawal of Blue Cross Blue Shield Minnesota from family and individual health care coverage.

Anders Koskinen