Federal officials to review Minn.'s progress on health exchange

Minnesota Commerce Department officials say federal officials will review the state's progress on developing a key part of the federal health care overhaul next week.

Minnesota representatives will meet next week with the officials of the US Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight for what one commerce official called a kind of "midterm exam."

The federal officials will assess Minnesota's progress in developing a central pillar of the federal health care overhaul, the state health insurance exchange. That's an online marketplace where consumers and small businesses can compare health plans and buy coverage beginning in 2014.

The review will cover a number of areas including: the exchange's business operations; I.T. systems and financial management. Commerce department officials say Minnesota is among the four states that have made the most progress in developing an exchange, the others being Washington, Ore. and Rhode Island.