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Reynolds signs association health plan bill


Thousands more Iowans, including many farmers and small-business owners, will have access to limited health coverage plans in 2019 under a bill signed this morning by Gov. Kim Reynolds. The measure, Senate File 2349, allows Farm Bureau to build a self-funded health benefit arrangement for Iowans forced from the individual market due to high premium costs. It also allows small employers to band together to create affordable health care options for their employees. “Thank you to Farm Bureau for their work and willingness to provide relief to Iowans who can no longer afford their health insurance,” Reynolds said. “Thank you also to Iowa Insurance Division Commissioner Doug Ommen for his leadership on this issue.” Iowa Farm Bureau Federation President Craig Hill said: “Although it isn’t meant to be a solution for all, we are pleased that lawmakers and the governor agree it is an option for thousands who need an affordable health plan that works until Congress passes a permanent solution to the ACA-inspired health care coverage crisis.” The bill has been opposed by Minnesota-based Medica, currently the sole carrier in Iowa selling in the individual market for Affordable Care Act plans, because it exempts its competitor Wellmark from federal ACA rules, which allows it to selectively cover the healthiest individuals while excluding those with pre-existing conditions.   

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