About 930,000 Minnesotans who don't get health coverage at the workplace are expected to use the exchange in 2014. That includes uninsured Minnesotans, currently about 9 percent of the state, as well as those with low and moderate incomes who qualify for public programs. The exchange also is aimed at individuals and families who buy health coverage directly from private insurers, and businesses with fewer than 50 workers.
THE NEXT STEPS FOR SETTING UP THE EXCHANGE:
March 31: Deadline for legislators to pass a bill establishing a state health exchange and figuring out such key details as what kind of ruling body will oversee it.
May 17: Health plans submit their plan designs and premium rates for review to the Department of Commerce.
Summer: Marketing efforts begin, including traditional and non-traditional venues, including social media, webinars, 4th of July parades and the Minnesota State Fair.
July to late fall: System will get tested to ensure proper connection to federal hub.
Oct. 1: Minnesotans select and sign up for plans, as open enrollment begins.
Jan. 1, 2014: Health coverage from exchange-purchased plans begins, including premium support and tax credits from the federal government.
Jan. 1, 2016: Exchange must be self-supporting.