What is Short-Term Medical?
This is an ideal product for temporary health insurance needs. Examples would be to bridge a coverage gap for COBRA, coverage for after school graduation but before landing/starting a job, and many other circumstances. Coverage is prepaid for a one month to one year time period and these policies do not cover pre-existing ailments nor do they cover anything after policy termination. It is essentially inexpensive stopgap coverage.
How it Works
The application process for a short-term medical plan is typically simpler than it is for standard, long-term health insurance plans. Short-term plans are designed to protect you against unforeseen sudden onset medical illnesses or injuries, rather than to provide comprehensive coverage. As such, short-term plans generally do not include coverage for preventive care, physicals, immunizations, dental or vision care.
Purchasing a short-term medical plan will make you ineligible for any guaranteed issue individual health plan (commonly referred to as HIPAA Plans). HIPAA Plans are usually very expensive and are generally meant for people with pre-existing medical conditions that cannot obtain health insurance otherwise. If you wish to maintain your eligibility for HIPAA plans, you should not choose a short-term medical plan.
However, a short-term plan is perfect to avoid a break in coverage and the imposition of pre-existing condition exclusions. Short-term medical plans typically do not cover any pre-existing medical conditions. Although the definition varies by state, a pre-existing medical condition generally includes any condition that may have been diagnosed or treated within the previous three to five years.
If you have a pre-existing condition, and need it to be covered for claim purposes, you should consider extending your current insurance under COBRA instead of choosing a short-term medical plan.
You can get a free quote and apply for short-term medical online. For more details about other types of health care coverage visit Healthcare for Individuals and Families.