If you live in Orlando, Florida and are temporarily without medical insurance coverage, you may have been advised to take out short term health insurance. If this idea is new to you, you will no doubt be asking: What is short term health insurance in Orlando, Florida? You need to understand the advantages and limitations of this type of coverage, in order to decide whether it is right for you.
Short term health insurance in Orlando, Florida is a particular type of coverage designed to tide you over during a brief gap in your normal medical coverage. In Florida it is officially known as Short Term Major Medical Insurance with Limited Benefits. Policies are usually issued for 6-12 months, although the period can be as short as 30 days or as long as three years, depending on the insurer. It operates in a similar way to ordinary medical insurance, with an insurance card and deductibles, but there are some major differences in coverage.
If you are looking into the question: What is short term health insurance in Orlando, Florida? You will want to understand why anyone would need this type of coverage. There are actually a number of reasons why you may be temporarily without medical insurance. One of the most common situations occurs when you have recently been taken on by a new employer, but have to wait for anything between 30 and 90 days before you can be added to the company’s group plan. Another possible reason may be that you have reached the cut-off age on your parents’ plan, but are waiting to enroll as a full-time student or find employment. You may simply be unemployed — perhaps you have recently been laid off and are looking for a job.
In many of these situations, you would actually be eligible for COBRA insurance. This is a provision under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1986, whereby a previous employer with 20 or more employees is obliged to offer you the option of an 18-month extension of your coverage. However, this can be extremely expensive, and if you are a student or unemployed you may not be able to afford it. Short term health insurance in Orlando, Florida could be an affordable alternative.
Short term or temporary health insurance operates as an indemnity plan, so that you are free to go to the health care provider of your choice. However, most policies require you to obtain pre-certification from the insurer before being hospitalized. In addition, most work on a stepped deductible principle, by which you pay 100 percent of the deductible up to a certain level of the claim amount, then 50 percent up to a further level, after which the insurer pays the full amount, up to the plan maximum.
The main limitation of short term health insurance in Orlando, Florida is that it does not cover pre-existing medical conditions — that is, conditions reported within the 36 months before the policy was issued. This is because, in general, short term policies are exempt from HIPAA, the 1996 Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. This, among other provisions, prevents group health care plans from denying coverage to applicants who have pre-existing conditions, but does not apply to short term plans.
However, some states have legislation which provides slightly more generous conditions. Short term health insurance in Orlando, Florida is covered by Florida Statute 627.6045, if the policy is issued for more than six months. Under this statute, the period of exclusion is only 24 months, not 36, and the exclusion only applies to conditions arising within this period which would normally cause people to seek treatment. In fact, this could even apply to policies issued for six months or less, if the terms were not clearly stated to the applicant.
In addition, most short term insurance policies exclude many types of preventive and elective care, including physical examinations. However, short term health insurance in Orlando, Florida includes many benefits that are specific to Florida. These include mammograms for over-35s, diabetes supplies, osteoporosis treatment, and dental anesthesia.
When you are temporarily uninsured and in good health, you may be tempted to continue without insurance coverage for a time. However, illness or accident could strike at any time, and even a visit to the emergency room can cost hundreds of dollars, before you even have any treatment. Short term health insurance in Orlando, Florida can cost only a few dollars a day, and will save you from finding yourself on your own with a huge bill to pay.