Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Former health secretary is CEO of Kentucky Health Cooperative, a new type of insurance firm created by health reform

Former health and family services secretary Janie Miller, who resigned in February, has become chief executive of the Kentucky Health Cooperative, a new type of health-insurance organization established by the federal health-care reform law.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires the cooperatives to be "directed by their customers and designed to offer people and small businesses affordable health insurance options," Tom Loftus explains for The Courier-Journal, noting that the co-op got a $59 million loan from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in June. The co-op "is sponsored by a coalition of business leaders, health providers and community organizations," Loftus reports.

The co-op declined to reveal Miller's salary. She was state insurance commissioner from 2001 to 2003, when Republican Gov. Ernie Fletcher was elected. When Democrat Steve Beshear became governor in December 2007, he named Miller secretary of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services. She is a naive of McCreary County.

Miller said in a news release, “The co-op will be governed and run by its members and will provide individuals and small businesses a viable alternative for quality, affordable health insurancec coverage. Unlike traditional insurance, however, any profits earned by the co-op must be used to improve benefits or lower premiums.” The C-J story is here.

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