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Enrollment begins for Missouri high risk health insurance

By Elana Gordon, KCUR

Kansas City, Mo. – Enrollment begins today for a new high risk insurance pool in Missouri.

On Wednesday the Department of Health and Human Services awarded the state an $80 million contract to run the pool.

Travis Ford with the Missouri Department of Insurance said the state already has a high risk pool, but this new one will make a big difference for people who struggle to get health coverage.

"While there's been a high risk pool set up by state law since 1991, there's been an option for people with preexisting conditions, but it's been very expensive," Ford said. "It's 30 percent higher than what's available on the general market. The big difference with this pool, because it's got a federal subsidy, it will offer rates that are 30 percent less. In other words, the same as what's available out on market."

The new pool is part of the federal health care law that recently took effect.
People are eligible for the new high-risk coverage if they've been without insurance for at least six months, have a pre-existing condition, and are Missouri residents.


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