Social service orgs apply for MNsure money

More than 100 organizations have applied to share in a $4 million federal grant to help Minnesotans find health insurance coverage on the new online marketplace, MNsure.

The funding is intended to help social service organizations purchase equipment and hire staff so they can reach and provide assistance to an influx of new clients. It will allow them to help consumers sign up for health coverage.

Awards will largely range from $2,000 to $200,000 but up to $500,000 could be available to coalitions that serve specific regions or hard-to-reach populations. MNsure officials say they will announce the awards by Aug. 23.

Some consumers and small businesses might want to use a broker or agent to buy policies on MNsure. More than 1,200 insurance brokerages and agents have notified the state that they would be interested in selling commercial plans on MNsure. Those that do would be paid on commission by insurance plans.

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