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Video conference for new health coverage plan to take place in Alexandria

The Minnesota Department of Commerce will hold a public meeting via video conference on Monday, July 22 between 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. to gather public input that best addresses the transition to new health coverage for people who have been enrolled in the state's high risk health insurance pool, Minnesota Comprehensive Health Association (MCHA).

In Alexandria, the conference will take place at Douglas County Human Services, 809 Elm Street.

In response to changes in health insurance due to the Minnesota Insurance Marketplace Act, which passed during the 2013 legislative session and tasked the Commerce Department to determine the need for, and implement a phase-out and eventual appropriate termination of coverage provided by MCHA the Commerce Department is seeking public comment on the draft transition plan released June 30, 2013.

The public comment period for the draft transition plan is open through the month of July. The Commerce Department, in consultation with MCHA, has identified the following key goals to guide the transition plan:

--Review and analyze key financial, operation, enrollee, and other data.

--A safe and orderly transition process.

--Ensure the least amount of disruption to the enrollees.

--Minimal disruption to the health insurance markets.

--Regular and accurate communication and outreach to assist enrollees in their transition process.

--Minimize MCHA tax and cost burden on the public and health insurance markets.

--Sufficient notice to current enrollees to take advantage of opportunities available in the marketplace in 2014.

--Opportunities for public comment and feedback.

The Commerce Department outlined a timeline of key dates and opportunities for public comment:

May 1, 2013 - June 15, 2013: Gather public comment.

June 1, 2013 - June 30, 2013: Prepare draft of transition plan.

July 1, 2013 - July 31, 2013: Gather public comment on draft transition plan.

August 1, 2013 - August 31, 2013: Develop final transition plan.

August 31, 2013: Issue final transition plan

September 1, 2013 - September 30, 2013: Provide information to MCHA enrollees prior to open enrollment.

October 1, 2013 - March 31, 2014: Open enrollment period for MNsure.