As a result of recent changes in federal regulations, short-term health insurance plans aren’t so “short” anymore.
Traditionally, short-term plans were meant to act as stop-gap coverage for 30 to 60 days, and were usually purchased by workers between jobs. Now short-term plans can be sold for up to 364 days, and can be renewed for up to 36 months.
With the new rules in place, the substantially lower premiums for short-term health insurance plans may seem attractive when compared with traditional health insurance. However short-term plans are cheaper for a reason: They can actually result in hidden costs that eclipse any premium savings.
For example, short-term plans are not subject to the same consumer protections that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires of comprehensive plans. If you have a pre-existing condition, you might not be able to obtain a policy at all, or if you do, any treatment related to your condition might not be covered, according to multiple reports. Additionally, most short-term plans don’t cover regular office visits, preventive care, prescription drugs, maternity care, mental health care, or substance abuse treatments.
Another hidden cost of short-term health insurance is the potential impact it could have on the health insurance industry. If short-term plans siphon off healthier patients from the risk pool, the result may be much higher premiums for those who must remain in ACA-compliant health plans.
TMA Members Have Another Option
If you are a practice owner with a Tax ID and at least one full-time employee on payroll, TMA Insurance Trust can help you find comprehensive health insurance coverage and show you how to limit the cost to your practice.
Through our research, we’ve uncovered two little-known waivers that might help you qualify for ACA-compliant group PPO health insurance. With these waivers, there are no mandatory requirements for how many people you cover, or what percentage you must contribute toward their coverage. There is even a special “group of one” option that could allow you to get group coverage just for yourself, without needing to cover any of your employees.
These special waivers are only available to practice owners, and are being offered only for a limited time.
Please contact a TMA Insurance Trust adviser for more information.