Montanans Call Out Matt Rosendale For His Failure to Protect Montanans with Pre-Existing Conditions by Re-Introducing Medi-Share

Billings—Today, Montanans called out Matt Rosendale’s complete failure as insurance commissioner to do his job to protect Montana consumers—in particular, his decision to bring back Medi-Share, a health care sharing ministry that isn’t required to cover pre-existing conditions.

Medi-Share—which previously held its money in an offshore bank account in the Bahamas—was banned from Montana in 2007 for fraud after the then-Insurance Commissioner determined that it was operating as insurance without proper oversight. That year, Medi-Share refused to pay for a life-saving operation for a years-long paying Montana member who had cancer.

State Rep. Marilyn Ryan (HD-99), Vicky Byrd of the Montana Nurses Association, and Michael Cok, the attorney involved in a legal dispute over Medi-Share not paying for a member’s claims, criticized Matt Rosendale for his decision to bring back the fraudulent program and his failure to protect 152,000 Montanans with pre-existing conditions.

Medi-Share also does not have to cover basic health care services such as addiction recovery or prenatal care for single mothers or preventative services like colonoscopies or mammograms.

“I’m very disappointed that Matt Rosendale would bring Medi-Share back into Montana,” said State Rep. Marilyn Ryan. “It’s really fraudulent. There’s no place in Montana for this type of plan.”

“These plans will only empower those who wish to return to the days when insurance companies could charge whatever rates they wanted and deny coverage for pre-existing conditions,” said Vicky Byrd, RN and Executive Director of the Montana Nurses. “It appears that consumers, who are our patients, won’t be able to count on help from Montana’s insurance commissioner since Matt Rosendale has promoted these Medi-Share plans as legitimate, non-insurance alternative to true health insurance.”

“From the perspective of the person who’s represented a family devastated by this, I don’t see any reason to allow Medi-Share to do business here in Montana where it could damage vulnerable people,” said Michael Cok, Montana attorney. “Commissioner Rosendale should not have approved Medi-Share. It’s an illusory coverage with no guarantee of payment.”

Bringing back this fraudulent program and pushing for policies that could jeopardize critical, even life-saving, care is just another example of Rosendale throwing Montanans with pre-existing conditions under the bus and further proof that he’s only looking out for himself.