Insurance news in Iowa reveals struggles as state takes over co-op

Iowa stopgap health insurance plan

CoOportunity Health was established under the Affordable Care Act, but it has found itself in financial calamity.

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A young health insurer in Iowa, CoOportunity Health, which was established under the Affordable Care Act, is now making insurance news as it has been taken over by the state due to considerable financial struggles.

The health insurance division of the state has now had to step in as a result of the co-op’s money woes.

The insurance news had originally appeared promising for CoOportunity Health, as it had been established as an alternative for small businesses and individual consumers, within a market that offered them only a small number of choices. The co-op had received federal loan guarantees in the tens of millions of dollars range, through the Affordable Care Act. It started to sell its policies through the health care reform back in 2013. According to the commissioner in Iowa, Nick Gerhart, the co-op has about $17 million in cash and assets and boasts about 120,000 members.

Unfortunately, the insurance news also revealed that the co-op had expected to receive more money, but didn’t.

Iowa Health Insurance IndustryThe company had been under the impression that more federal funds would be headed their way, but they did not receive them. Gerhart explained that “It’s a difficult situation.” He went on to explain that the coverage for the co-op’s customers will continue, but he is under the impression that the majority of those members will have switched to health insurance from other carriers by the 2015 enrollment deadline of February 15.

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The vice president for corporate communications at CoOportunity, Dana McNeill, explained that the company is currently working with Iowa regulators in order to help to ensure that the transition experienced by customers will run as smoothly as possible. She also made it clear that “Nick Gerhart is in charge of the company now.” That said, at the time that this article was written, she declined the opportunity to leave any further comment.

The insurance news about this type of company has not been the same nationwide. There are about two dozen health insurance co-ops currently in existence throughout the United States. The situation experienced by CoOportunity came as a surprise to many, as that co-op had been expected to be one of the greatest success stories.

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