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Insured Minnesotans Feel Like They're Losing Out

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Nearly 280,000 Minnesotans who pay for their own insurance will receive a letter from their health care provider detailing some small and some large changes to their plans.

"Not everybody will have changes," said Eileen Smith with the Minnesota Council on Health Plans. "If you do have changes, that letter outlines what changes are going to be made to your plan to comply with the new law."

Some of the new changes required by the Affordable Care Act include "essential health benefits" such as newborn care, mental health and substance abuse services. And those changes have some people up in arms, because it's forcing their premiums to skyrocket.

Insured Minnesotans Feel Like They're Losing Out

"I was shell-shocked when I saw the increase of my premiums," said Dave Magnuson owner of the Walkin' Dog, a small business in the Minneapolis Skyway. "It's going to increase around 45 percent."

Magnuson has been purchasing his and his family's insurance for 22 years. Like many Minnesotans, he thought the Affordable Care Act would allow people who want to keep their current insurance plan the same to do so. But new requirements under the ACA are forcing change.

"Yes, you can keep the plan, but you're paying the freight," Magnuson said.

Under Minnesota law, the state is required to guarantee renew-ability of your health insurance plan, but that doesn't mean your premium is locked-in.

Other changes include limits on deductible. In the past Magnuson and his family were able to increase their deductible up to $15,000 to keep their premium low. The ACA now limits deductibles.

Another change, healthy people who rarely used insurance can no longer receive a discount, but those who used more service will pay less.

"That rule creates what people are calling the 'real winners and losers' on the financial side of things," Smith said.

Magnuson is now shopping on MNsure's website to find the best option for him and his family.

Insured Minnesotans Feel Like They're Losing Out

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