Short Term Health Insurance

Sometimes, we need short-term health insurance. You may have just graduated from school, or left a job, and need to get your own insurance on a temporary basis while you job hunt. Maybe you've actually got a new job, but your employers group health has a waiting period. These are good times to consider short-term health insurance if you can get it where you live.

Short-term health insurance is just what the name implies: health insurance for a short term, usually 30 days to 180 days, although some plans will offer coverage for up to 12 months. If your short-term needs look like they may run longer than your coverage, you may be able to renew. However, you can't count on a short-term plan to provide insurance for more than a year.

Short-term plans usually provide all the same basic kinds of benefit's that you would expect in any health insurance plan. However, also like other plans, you may have to cope with benefit limit's, deductibles and co-payments. In most cases, you'll be allowed to pick your own doctors, hospitals or health-care providers. Most of these plans rarely require a physical exam and coverage can start as soon as your first premium is received. However, because of the easy application and acceptance, most plans also won't cover any previous medical conditions.

To keep the premiums on these kinds of plans down, you won't likely get all the benefit's of a permanent health insurance plan. Aside from the restriction on pre-existing conditions, you'll also find that most won't cover routine medical exams, preventative care, dental or optical or pregnancy and childbirth expenses. Having said that, you will be able to guarantee yourself and your family continuous health insurance which can be important later when you are able to get permanent health insurance through a new employer.

One other caveat: short-term health insurance is exempt from the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. In other words, they are not subject to COBRA. As a result, most carriers don't have to guarantee renewability. They also don't have to waive pre-existing conditions, even when other plans would.

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