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Short-term and long-term health insurance plans- Know the difference!
Are you shopping for health insurance plans? Are you not sure whether to choose short-term or long-term insurance plans? This blog will help you understand the difference between the two plans. Read on.
What is a short-term insurance plan?
Short-term health insurance plans are health insurance plans that can provide you with temporary medical coverage when you are between health plans, outside enrollment periods, and need some coverage in case of an emergency. They are valid for a shorter duration of time in comparison to a long-term plan. Though both health insurance plans offer similar coverage, the validity of the former is less. The policy period is usually less than 12 months. You can choose your own policy maximum and deductible, giving you full control of your coverage and price.
What do short-term insurance plans cover?
Each plan is different, hence the coverage may differ. It is ideal to read the brochure before selecting a plan. Generally, the following things may be covered:
- Hospitalization– Costs related to hospitalization like surgeries, bed charges, doctor visits, medicines, etc.
- Ambulance– The expenses of hiring an ambulance for transporting the patient from one place to another or the nearest qualified medical facility.
- Sick Visits– If you are not feeling well and need to visit a doctor or Urgent Care , short-term plans can cover a new illness/injury. .
- Pre and post hospitalization– A planned surgery may need care and treatment before and after hospitalization. A short-term policy may cover this.
Since these plans cover you for a year, these will not cover long-term conditions like maternity, mental health, and pre-existing conditions. These policies will provide coverage for any new illnesses, injuries, accidents, or wounds.
What are the benefits of short-term plans?
- Low premiums– A short-term health insurance policy is designed to fill short term gaps in coverage, it is valid for only a few months and does not cover long-term conditions so it will cost you less than buying a full-fledged plan.
- Switching companies– You can cancel coverage whenever you like. If you are not happy with the coverage or the type of services you are receiving, you can either wait for the policy to expire or switch to another insurance company.
Choose your Plan: Many different plan designs are available, depending on insurance carrier
Who is it for?
Short-term plans may work well for both individuals and families. Short term plans were created to help fill temporary gaps in coverage that can occur in certain situations when you are between health plans, outside enrollment periods, and need some coverage in case of an emergency. Short term plans cannot replace the traditional long-term plans as they have limited coverage and typically exclude coverage for pre-existing conditions, complete preventative care, maternity, mental health, and more.
What is a long-term insurance plan?
A long-term health insurance plan are annual coverage plans and offer coverage for more time in comparison to a short-term insurance plan. Typically, these type of plans are renewable annually for people who wish to stick to one plan for a longer time. Long-term coverage plans are less flexible but come with a higher level of coverage.
What do long-term insurance plans cover?
Though each plan is different, read the policy to understand what it includes and what does not. Generally, the plans may cover the following:
- Hospitalization– Medical expenses for treatment for illnesses, diseases, accidental injuries, minor surgeries, etc. may be covered under a long-term policy.
- Pre and post hospitalization– Expenses of treatment before and after undergoing surgery may be covered.
- Preventive Care – Regular annual physical examinations can be covered by the long- term plans. This is crucial to keep a tab on the current health status and detect an ailment in its early stage.
- Critical illness– A long-term policy can cover the cost of treating a potentially life-threatening illness like cancer, brain stroke, etc.
No insurance plan will cover everything, but long-term options offer better coverage like preventive care, maternity, pre-existing conditions, wellness visits, and more.
What are the benefits of long-term insurance plans?
- Higher policy period– Since a long-term health insurance policy is valid for more than a year, you can enjoy the benefits of being insured for a longer duration.
- Fewer chances of claim rejection– With a long-term health insurance policy, the insurance company will be able to assess your claims and would not reject them because of pre-existing conditions or an inactive policy.
- No frequent renewals– It is difficult to keep a track of the policy expiry date and complete the renewal process. But with a long-term plan, you must renew the policy annually.
Who is it for?
These plans may be ideal for individuals, and families needing coverage for more than a year. They may work well for international students because they can keep the same policy throughout their academic programs. Anyone with pre-existing conditions or needing maternity coverage may opt for a long-term plan.
Do you need more assistance regarding the same? Call Visitor Guard®!