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How are health insurance changes affecting you?

How is the Affordable Care Act affecting you?

Have you checked out Minnesota’s new health insurance marketplace, MNsure?

Will your premiums be going up or down?

0 Talk about it

How is the process going – fairly smooth or filled with glitches?

Let the Echo Press know.

We’re putting together a story about the health care insurance changes and how they’re affecting residents and businesses in the Douglas County area.

Please post a comment in the “talk about it” link with this story or send your comments or contact information to

Effective January 1, 2014, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will require all Americans to maintain a minimum level of health coverage or face a tax penalty.

Consumers can shop for health care insurance at the government’s website, They also may call (855) 366-7873 to arrange for in-person help to buy insurance.

The marketplace is designed for those who don’t have insurance now and those who currently purchase their own insurance, meaning they don’t get it through an employer.

About 11,000 people have bought health insurance policies the MNsure program since its October 1 launch.

More activity is expected as a December 15 deadline nears to have policies in place by January 1.

According to MNsure information released last week, 42,000 people have visited the website and 28,000 created accounts, a precursor to buying insurance.

People who have created more than half of the accounts would be eligible for some form of federal financial assistance, up to Washington paying the entire bill.

Those on the federal Medicare program cannot use MNsure, but MNsure will be the only way for those on MinnesotaCare and Medical Assistance to continue receiving free or low-cost coverage.

In the meantime, just 17 small businesses have completed buying their health care plans. Large businesses are not eligible to use MNsure.

Al Edenloff
Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  
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