CoOportunity Health Under Regulator Control
Iowa state regulators have taken control of a health insurance exchange with close credit union ties.
On Dec. 23, the Iowa Insurance Commissioner forced into rehabilitation CoOportunity Health, Inc., a Des Moines, Iowa-based cooperative. The firm was created following the passage of the Affordable Care Act to issue health insurance in Iowa and Nebraska.
The insurance commissioner's office said it took over management of the insurer and will either recover the business or prepare it for liquidation.
The only cooperative health insurance exchange approved by federal authorities in the two states, CoOportunity Health partnered with the Iowa and Nebraska credit union leagues to designate the states’ credit unions its exclusive financial institution distribution channel.
In a Dec. 24 release, the state insurance commissioner blamed the rehabilitation order on insufficient capitalization and an inability to obtain additional capital from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
CoOportunity lost $46 million during the first 10 months of this year, according to the state’s legal order, filed in Iowa’s Polk County District Court.The legal documents also said on Dec. 16, CMS told CoOportunity it couldn’t cover the loss.
The Insurance Commissioner’s office posted a Q&A sheet for CoOportunity’s 96,000 enrollees.
Iowa and Nebraska Credit Unions played a large role in the firm’s success, with at least 45 of them offering the exchange to their members. CoOportunity paid participating credit unions a referral fee.
Under the order, CoOportunity Health is banned from signing up new enrollees in Iowa.