The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was signed into law on March 11, 2021 as a signature effort to assist in the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and the related economic downturn. Included as part of the sweeping legislation is a program to fully subsidize COBRA coverage for six months starting in April of 2021. This expert perspective provides a short overview of COBRA and mini-COBRA, the major elements of the ARPA COBRA Assistance program, and considerations for state policymakers related to the program.
Partnerships Between Brokers and Marketplaces: An Assessment of Minnesota’s Broker-Operated Enrollment Centers
Jon Kingsdale, Ph.D., Kathie Mazza, and Kerry Connolly, Wakely Consulting Group, Bob Davy and Ken Harpell, MNsure
As health insurance marketplaces continue to approach the fourth open enrollment period, the development of innovative models and partnerships for reaching consumers becomes increasingly important. During the third open enrollment period, MNsure, Minnesota’s state-based marketplace, designated and supported twenty broker-operated enrollment centers around the state, which made a series of special commitments to promote enrollment through the marketplace. Determining the efficiency and effectiveness of such efforts is critical for the planning and development of future efforts undertaken by marketplaces. This issue brief, developed by Wakely Consulting Group and MNsure, assesses the effectiveness of the marketplace’s broker-operated enrollment center initiative, identifying areas in which it may offer lessons for other states seeking to maximize enrollment as well as opportunities for improving upon the model.