HELENA, Mont., June 28, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Statement from NASHCO President John Morrison:
"Even before today's Supreme Court decision to affirm the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, health care CO-OPs have been moving full steam ahead since the passage of the law in 2010. In addition to the 16 health CO-OPs that have already signed loan agreements with HHS totaling $1.24 billion, a majority of states across the country have CO-OP development groups in various stages of the application process. They are implementing one of the most basic goals of health care reform: to provide all Americans with affordable, accountable, and consumer-governed health insurance options.
"Today's events provide increased momentum for the health CO-OP movement. Though we are pleased with the Court's decision, we will not pause to celebrate as much work remains in the years ahead. Health CO-OPs will begin enrolling customers in October 2013, and will offer health insurance plans on the state exchanges beginning in January 2014. Health CO-OPs look forward to continuing to work with their communities, business and labor leaders, prospective members, their state and local governments, as well as the federal government to ensure the implementation of the Affordable Care Act proceeds according to schedule.
"Lost amid the focus on the Supreme Court decision is the fact that the American health care system was broken, leaving millions of our citizens without affordable health insurance or facing ever-increasing health care premiums and costs. The Affordable Care Act makes great strides in addressing these fundamental issues, and CO-OPs will play a pivotal role in helping Americans meet their health care needs."
NOTE: Health CO-OPs began forming after the passage of the Affordable Care Act, which created the CO-OP loan program. Congress has appropriated $3.4 billion in loans to spur their implementation. A health care CO-OP will be governed and run by its members and is subject to state and federal laws governing all insurers. Unlike traditional insurance, however, any profits earned will be used to either lower premiums or to improve benefits.
NASHCO is a nonprofit corporation formed to promote the development and success of the health co-op movement. NASHCO is composed of dedicated teams of volunteers throughout the nation seeking to establish a new way of accessing care using the cooperative governance model. For more information, visit www.nashco.coop.
Contact: Lewis Lowe, 202-333-2234
SOURCE National Alliance of State Health CO-OPs