The Colorado Division of Insurance has given Colorado HealthOP, a nonprofit health insurance cooperative, a certificate of authority.
The co-op now has the approvals it needs to sell health coverage to individuals and employers in Colorado, the company said.
The Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Educational and Charitable Foundation – a nonprofit organization that serves farmers and ranchers in Colorado, New Mexico and Wyoming — sponsored the creation of the co-op.
Organizers started the co-op with $69 million in financing from the federal Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan (CO-OP) program.
Drafters of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) created the CO-OP program in an effort to increase the level of competition in the health insurance market. CO-OPs are supposed to be nonprofit, member-owned health insurers with no ties to existing for-profit or nonprofit health insurers.
Colorado HealthOP hopes to sell coverage through agents and brokers as well as through Colorado’s PPACA health insurance exchange and through its own website, the company said.