He said adding more options to the Rochester market fulfills the Affordable Care Act's promise of more competition making insurance affordable.
"It helped. In this area it identified what was going on in a certain part of the state and we were able to then address it," Ehlinger said of the federal health care law. "So, this is doing exactly what ACA was supposed to do.
MNsure officials say they're trying to place the new Medica plans on the online marketplace as soon as possible.
They say no other new plans will be allowed into the marketplace for 2014, but other insurers may offer additional health plan options in 2015.
More than 1 million Minnesotans are expected to use MNsure to obtain health coverage starting next year when federal law requires most Americans to carry health insurance.