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Report: Affordable Care Act controls costs for early retiree coverage in Minnesota


Wed, Mar 2nd, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness



State and local governments, private employers in Minnesota receive $4,243,495 in 2010

to help protect coverage for retired Americans

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today released a new report showing that the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program (ERRP) created by the Affordable Care Act is reducing health care costs for early retirees. As of December 31, 2010 in Minnesota, 226 employers had been accepted into ERRP, and more than $4,243,495 in health benefit costs have been reimbursed through the program.

Nationally, as of December 31, 2010, more than 5,000 employers had been accepted into ERRP, and more than $535 million in health benefit costs have been reimbursed through the program. This funding provides financial assistance for health plan sponsors - including state and local governments, for-profit companies, schools and other educational institutions, unions, religious organizations and other non-profits - to help early retirees and their families maintain access to quality, affordable health coverage. The largest share of 2010 reimbursements went to governments, including state and local governments, school districts and other local agencies.

A list of approved plan sponsors, updated on January 27, 2011, is available online at www.HealthCare.gov/law/provisions/retirement.

"The Early Retiree Reinsurance Program is helping to control health care costs and protect coverage for early retirees and their families inMinnesota," said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. "This program is providing critical financial relief to help states, private employers and other organizations preserve access to affordable health coverage for millions of Americans."

The percentage of large firms providing workers with retiree health coverage dropped from 66 percent in 1988 to 29 percent in 2009. Many Americans who retire before they are eligible for Medicare without employer-sponsored health coverage see their life savings disappear because of medical bills and exorbitant rates in the individual health insurance market. Health insurance premiums for older Americans are over four times more expensive than those for young adults, and the deductible these enrollees pay is, on average, almost four times that in a typical employer-sponsored insurance plan.

ERRP reimburses participating plan sponsors for a portion of health coverage costs for early retirees and their spouses, surviving spouses, and depen .....
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Project Fit Families, Pursuing a Dream

Sat, Feb 12th, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness

Melinda Coscarelli Lutes, Harmony, is on her way to fulfilling her dream. She has established a non-profit organization "Project Fit Families." The immediate goal is to educate children about physical fitness and healthy living.

During her ..... 
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Project Fit Families, Pursuing a Dream

Sat, Feb 12th, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness

Melinda Coscarelli Lutes, Harmony, is on her way to fulfilling her dream. She has established a non-profit organization "Project Fit Families." The immediate goal is to educate children about physical fitness and healthy living.

During her ..... 
[Read the Rest]

Study shows sleep-deprived teens eat more

Sat, Feb 12th, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness

According to a recent study in the journal Sleep, teens who sleep less than eight hours a night are more likely to eat a high-fat diet that puts them at risk for obesity and other health problems.

The study found that sleep-deprived teens te ..... 
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Massage therapy benefits both body and mind

Sat, Feb 12th, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness

It seems that this is the time of year when the emphasis is on losing weight, eating healthy foods, starting some type of exercise program and trying to figure out a way to deal with the aches and pains of life without having to pop a dozen or more ..... 
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New screening shows highs and lows in state third graders' oral health

Sat, Feb 12th, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness

Oral health data collected in Minnesota for the first time show that the mouths of state third graders meet and exceed some national norms but fall short on others.

"The data show mixed findings," Dr. Edward Ehlinger, commissioner of the Mi ..... 
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Uninsured Americans in Minnesota with pre-existing conditions continue to gain coverage through Affordable Care Act

Sat, Feb 12th, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today made new resources available to the media, consumer groups, states, health care providers, and others to increase awareness of the Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP), a health pl ..... 
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Gundersen Lutheran-Harmony Clinic welcomes Randi Berg to their staff

Sat, Feb 12th, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness

Randi Berg, MD, has joined the staff at the Gundersen Lutheran - Harmony Clinic as a family medicine physician. Having lived in Decorah for the first 11 years of her life, returning to attend Luther College, and spending the past 10 years as a physi ..... 
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Volunteer needed for Semcac

Sat, Feb 12th, 2011
Posted in Health & Wellness

The Semcac Board of Directors is looking for one person to represent the interests of the consumer from Fillmore County.

The board includes three groups from the community: one-third represent the public sector; one-third represent the consu ..... 
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