The liquidation of CoOportunity Health Insurance has raised a lot of questions for thousands of policy-holders in Nebraska and Iowa. Natalie Duy, at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, is one of the people trying to answer some of those questions.
“The current CoOportunity members will be receiving a letter from our agency, CMS, or it may say it’s coming from the marketplace, that will give them instructions on exactly what they need to do,” Duy says. “They need to read that letter very carefully, because it is going to give them some deadlines they need to be aware of.”
Duy says those in the CoOportunity plan will have up until April 29th to change.
“They will have a special election period that will allow them to change plans. The sooner the better though, because anything that they’re paying towards out-of-pocket for deductibles or what-have-you for CoOpportunity will not carry over to the new plan that they choose for 2015. So, it’s best to pay sooner so whatever money they pay out of pocket will go toward the plan they choose ultimately for 2015,” Duy explains.
She says there are some other important financial issues involved.
“Come March 1st, CoOpportunity will no longer have the classification of a qualified health plan,” according to Duy. “So, what does that mean? That means that anyone in CoOpportuinty that is eligible for the advanced premium tax credits and the cost-sharing reduction, will not have those.”
You can sign up for a new health care plan at www.healthcare.gov, or Duy says you can apply for a new health care plan on the phone, toll-free, at 1-800-318-2596. While the hotline is staffed around the clock, Duy has a tip for getting through more easily.
She says you should try to call outside of normal business hours, as they are very busy right now, especially with the end of the normal open enrollment period ending February 15th.
The health care company was designed to handle about 12,000 clients initially but more than 120,000 signed on. The company collapsed as it didn’t have the capital to support itself. Around 40,000 policyholders are in Nebraska, the rest are in Iowa.