Short-Term Health Insurance Can Cover Workers During Job Transitions
Most employees that leave a job also leave their employer-sponsored medical coverage behind. This can be a chancy move, especially if you don’t have other insurance options readily available to you.
If you’ve already left your job, then you’ve most likely already found out that obtaining affordable health insurance isn’t the easiest task when you’re between jobs. COBRA is an option that gives you the right to keep your insurance from your previous employment, but the monthly premiums are usually extremely expensive and something that many simply can’t afford while unemployed.
Temporary insurance, which is a short-term form of health insurance, can be an affordable alternative to the high premiums associated with COBRA. It’s designed to provide a bridge between the gap of finding your next job and leaving your former employer-sponsored plan. Having such a policy can remove the chance of not being protected against unforeseen injury or sickness while you’re between jobs, but pre-existing conditions are usually excluded.
The premiums for short-term coverage policies are relatively much cheaper than those for COBRA, but the cost can still seem expensive for someone without a job. While finances may tempt you to put off insurance until you find another job, you should remember that financial security is the primary reason that individuals purchase short-term health insurance in the first place.
It only takes one unexpected hospital trip or admission to put someone without medical coverage hundreds to thousands of dollars in debt. For example, consider the financial repercussions if you suddenly develop appendicitis and need an emergency appendectomy when you don’t have medical insurance and the average cost of an appendectomy is between $11,000 and $18,000 dollars. Countless financial studies have cited medical bills as one of the leading causes of bankruptcy in America. Having short-term health coverage to carry you until your next job can help avoid the catastrophe of being responsible for the total cost of medical bills from being uninsured.
Aside from the value of financial protection, short-term insurance also helps to avoid having future health insurance claims rejected under Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPAA) laws. In other words, individuals that don’t have a break from credible insurance coverage exceeding 63 days are considered to have maintained a continuous coverage, which means that they won’t be subject to exclusions for pre-existing conditions. And, many approved short-term policies are included in the realm of credible coverage, even if they have exclusions for pre-existing conditions.
Depending on specific state requirements, short-term policies may run for a term of anywhere from 30-days to one year. As far as payment goes, most short-term health insurance plans offer two different options – paying through a monthly installment plan or in a single up-front payment that will cover a specific number of days. Generally, single payment plans are slightly cheaper than monthly payment plans.
Of course, temporary insurance is designed to be just thatвЂ¦a temporary solution to ease your health and financial concerns. It’s not designed to last longer than a year and should never be considered a long-term insurance solution. Once you’ve found another job, you should look into your new employer’s insurance offerings and determine when your new coverage would start if it’s elected.