In many developing countries limited health budgets are a serious problem. Innovative ways to raise funds for the provision of health services, for example, through health care insurance, have a high priority. Health care insurance for rural households shields such patients from unexpected high costs of care. However, there are questions about whether, and how much, rural households are willing to pay to purchase such insurance, as well as the factors determining willingness to pay. In recent years the Iranian government has tried to improve health and medical services to rural areas through a health insurance program. This study was conducted to estimate rural households' demand and willingness to pay for health insurance. A contingent valuation method (CVM) was applied using an iterative bidding game technique. Data has been collected from a sample of 2,139 households across the country.