A state law approved this past spring authorized Farm Bureau to sell what some call “skinny insurance plans.” The plans are not insurance. Premiums are lower because the plans do not comply with all the requirements of the Affordable Care Act.
Advocates say the Farm Bureau Health Plans will help Iowans who are not getting health care coverage through an employer, but make too much money to qualify for federal subsidies to buy individual insurance policies. Farm Bureau Health Benefit Plans will be managed by Wellmark, but sold by the Farm Bureau to Farm Bureau members who live in Iowa.
The Iowa Insurance Commissioner is advising Iowans who have questions about the plans to “contact Farm Bureau directly” and talk to “a licensed insurance agent to discuss what options may be available.”
There is a $3 million cap on the total amount that will paid out during the lifetime of someone who is covered by one of these Health Benefit Plans. In addition, applicants will have to answer questions about their health and underwriters may deny coverage based on factors like pre-existing conditions.