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UI, CoOportunity announce health insurance partnership

BY ALISON CRISSMAN | JULY 09, 2013 5:00 AM

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Two Iowa health organization have announced a collaboration that will bring about two new options for Iowans when they seek health-insurance plans.

CoOportunity Health, a multistate health insurance co-op, and the University of Iowa Health Alliance have submitted plans to the Iowa Insurance Division for approval. Those plans would feature provider networks that involve all member organizations of the Health Alliance, which includes more than 50 hospitals and 160 clinics across the state, a joint press release on Monday said.

Additional hospitals, physicians, and providers across the state have expressed an interest to CoOportunity Health in participating in the new insurance-plan offerings.

Dan Kueter, the executive director of the Health Alliance, said that the two plans are expected to cover approximately 50,000 Iowans over the course of three years.

One of the new options, called CoOportunity Choice UI Health Alliance, will be an open-access, tiered-benefit plan that provides significant consumer savings when Health Alliance facilities and clinicians are used for services, the release said.

The release said the second, called CoOportunity Preferred UI Health Alliance, will be a select-network plan that provides the most cost-effective choice for purchasers interested in using Health Alliance providers exclusively.

With new options for insurance plans, Kueter said, he expects Iowans will be pleased with their choices.

“I would certainly expect that the public will be happy with having additional choices … and I would expect that they will be happy with having choices that provide incentives to them to have a stronger relationship with their physicians,” he said.

Additionally, Kueter said, the new plans will have features in place that provide economic incentives for individuals to seek health-care services, such as follow-up care, preventive care, and prescription medication.

CoOportunity Health and the Health Alliance hope to offer the plans on the new Iowa Health Insurance Marketplace, the Iowa SHOP Exchange, and in the open market. The two groups hope to attract both individuals and employer groups of all sizes, the release said.


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