Wednesday, December 31, 2014

COOP Health Insurance…Alert!

Section 1322 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) allowed for the establishment of “consumer operated and oriented plans” or COOPs. Bolstering the ACA’s goal of expanded health insurance coverage, and borrowing from the agricultural industry’s adoption of COOPs in the 1920s, twenty-four COOPs were approved and funded by the federal government. Specifically, the fed awarded nearly $2 billion to the 24 approved COOPs operating in 24 different states. In theory, the COOPs would bring more competition and choice into the market, which is a welcome change from the hundreds of insurers who have abandoned the health insurance market over the last several years (see Metropolitan Life, Travelers, NY Life, Prudential, Principal, American Chambers Life, and Mutual of Omaha to name just a few).