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Nonprofit health insurer forming in Wisconsin

Business leaders and community organizers in Milwaukee have formed a nonprofit health insurance company to provide coverage to small businesses and individuals. Common Ground Healthcare Cooperative is one of 24 cooperatives being started nationwide with almost $2 billion in federal loans, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. Common Ground will focus on Milwaukee and eastern Wisconsin to start, selling coverage through the federally run online marketplace, or exchange, which opens Oct. 1.

The cooperative does not expect to have the lowest prices. Instead, Chairman Bob Connolly said it hopes to stand out by being a nonprofit run by its members.  "The difference is who we are, what we represent and what we stand for," Connolly said.

The cooperative is being started with up to $56.4 million in loans awarded under the Affordable Care Act. The money will go toward startup costs and meeting state requirements on reserves for insurance companies. It cannot be used for marketing, so the cooperative is relying on volunteers to get the word out by distributing fliers and talking to neighbors.

Read more at http://www.fox11online.com/news/wisconsin/nonprofit-health-insurer-forming-in-wisconsin.

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