Finding Short Term Health Insurance In Alabama
Thanks to recent health insurance legislation changes, short term health insurance is proving to be a pretty attractive option for those who are seeking quality health insurance coverage for themselves or their family.
So far, 2019 has been a year in which a lot of Alabama families are discovering that traditional health insurance
plans are simply not an option.
For most, the reason is price. A traditional health plan via the Affordable Care Act portfolio, can be quite expensive. Conversely, a short term plan can often meet a family's health care coverage needs and be reasonably priced.
In addition, short term health insurance plans are not so "short" anymore. In Alabama, you can purchase a short term health insurance plan, and keep it for at least a year, perhaps as long as three years. Use the link above to run an instant quote to see rates and term lengths for where you live.
Good to know: Make an effort to understand insurance terms and lingo. Understanding what various health insurance, or alternative health plan terms mean, is truly invaluable when it comes to choosing a quality health care plan. Don't even attempt to shop for coverage until you have a good understanding of terms like copay, coinsurance, deductibles, and lifetime maximums.
What is Short Term Health Insurance?
First, let's define what short term health insurance. There are two parts to this: What short term health insurance was, and what short term health insurance is today.
Initially, short term health insurance was designed just for short term situations. As the name implies, it was a health insurance plan with a short term duration, which ranged from several months to a year.
This type of insurance was for individuals who needed temporary medical insurance or could not afford traditional health insurance. It was used mostly by employees who frequently changed jobs, employees waiting for
their group health insurance plan to kick in, students going out of state to college, or young adults searching for their own insurance because they were no longer covered under their parent's plan.
Insurance coverage was strictly for hospitalization. Doctor visit benefits, preventative services, or prescription drug benefits, were unheard of.
Things have changed. In Alabama, there are now several short term health insurance plans available that offer doctor visit copay benefits, preventative services, prescription drug benefits, and more. Today, depending upon where you live
in the country, there are now short term plans that can be held for up to three years before a new application is needed. In terms of benefit structure and term length, short term health insurance plans are starting to look a lot like traditional health insurance plans.
The Alabama community has noticed. Short-term health insurance is becoming an ideal health insurance solution for a growing number of Alabama families.
Short term health insurance is not for every circumstance. It lacks several of the guaranteed benefits that are part of the Affordable Care Act portfolio of plans. However,
There are several notable advantages.
- Far Cheaper for Healthier Individuals
Compared with standard ACA plans, which can run even healthy individuals around $400-plus dollars every month, short-term health insurance plans average less than $100 a month, with some options being as low as $70-$80.
Of course, the amount of coverage offered depends on the price. You obviously won’t get the same amount of coverage with even a more-expensive $100 plan as you would with an ACA option. This is why short-term health insurance plans are being increasingly sought by healthier individuals who don’t require all the coverage mandated by the ACA.
For individuals, especially, short-term health insurance plans offer a nice way out of one-size-fits-all healthcare packages with exorbitant premiums. It’s recommended that you look at each plan in detail to make sure you are getting the coverage you need for your individual situation.
Under the law, these short-term health insurance plans are now renewable. Individuals seeking a refuge from high ACA premiums can do so for two-to-three years under current policy. Though this ultimately does not satisfy long-term demand, it provides a medium-range option that may prove more viable than traditional ACA plans for individuals or families who don’t qualify for government subsidies.
Most companies will allow individuals to renew existing plans without changes. This means customers can enjoy up to three years of medical insurance with the plans they choose.
Unlike traditional insurance plans, short-term insurance plans require no open enrollment. Those seeking these plans simply need to sign up and be approved to gain nearly instant access to medical coverage. Typically, short-term insurance plans begin coverage within one to fourteen days of being approved, whereas ACA plans can take between two and six weeks to go into effect.
Despite there being no set window period for enrollment, many short-term insurance companies opt to take part in open enrollment periods, if only to create awareness for their plans. If you plan on participating in this year’s open
enrollment, pay attention for these companies and see if their alternative plans are right for you. If you don’t wish to wait, however, keep in mind that short-term insurance is offered year long, so you never have to worry about missing an open enrollment period.
Good to know: High-deductible plans come at a cost: You'll pay less each month in terms of premiums, but if you do have to use any medical services, you'll pay out of pocket for longer thanks to that high deductible. Still, if you're looking to lower your monthly costs and you're someone who doesn't frequent the doctor often, high-deductible plans are a valid option.
How to know if a short term health insurance plan is the right solution for your needs.
Figuring out if short-term health insurance is right for you, depends on what key insurance plan factors are important to you. Below are a few reasons why more Americans are choosing short term insurance options for their health care coverage needs:
- Affordability. Traditional Health insurance options can be very costly for the kind of coverage a family may need. A short term health insurance plan might be a more affordable solution.
- Employment Gap. If you receive health insurance through your employer and are between plans or jobs, short-term health insurance can help cover you and your family.
- Network. Short-term insurance may help expand your options, if you live in an area with few healthcare providers.
- Near immediate coverage. In most cases, you can qualify and be covered by a short term health insurance plan within 24 hours.
Speaking with a true health insurance specialist will be the best way to sum up all the information you acquired and turn it into a smart health plan choice. When it comes to choosing the right health care plan, knowledge and expertise are the most important factors.
Good to know: You shouldn't promptly pay medical bills. Yes, you read that right. The reason is, healthcare providers tend to send bills well before the insurance company has decided what part of the claim they are obligated to pay. The average person sees a bill and thinks they are obligated to pay it. This couldn't be further from the truth. Health care companies routinely shoots out bills to everyone one involved - regardless of who is actually responsible for paying it. You need to know what the insurer is going to pay before you do anything. Our advice? Don't pay a dime until you get an EOB (Explanation of Benefits) from your insurer that explains your claim and how much they are paying.
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