Montana Health Insurance Co-op Applies for Federal Funding

Organizers of a Montana health insurance co-op have applied to the federal government for a start-up loan, which they hope will enable them to set up the co-op next year, according to a Billings Gazette report.

According to the report, the Montana Health Cooperative submitted an application to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Sunday. The department will decide by mid-January which co-ops will receive the loans.

Member-owned co-ops, which were authorized by the 2010 federal healthcare reform law, are being formed in various states to offer alternatives to private health insurers in markets currently dominated by several large insurers.

According to the report, the Montana co-op would need around 10,000 members to start, but would eventually aim for 40,000-80,000 members.

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