23 Feb Proposed Increased Access to Short-Term Insurance Plans

President Trump announced this week that he is proposing a plan to increase access to short-term health insurance plans. These plans would not be subject to minimum standards for insurance set by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This means that they would not be required to cover the minimum ten essential benefits established by the ACA, nor would they be required to cover pre-existing conditions. Similar short-term plans currently exist, but they can only be purchased for a maximum of about three months of coverage. The newly proposed plans would permit up to twelve months of coverage.

Proponents of the plan view this as an opportunity for affordable health coverage for those who cannot afford to purchase insurance on the exchange. Opponents of the plan believe that this could destabilize the insurance exchange market, with healthier patients leaving current exchange plans for this more affordable option. The further concern is that although these types of plans can act as a good stop gap, if, for example, you are between jobs, these could leave unsuspecting customers with what will essentially be “catastrophic” coverage, deeply lacking in necessary benefits.

We searched for a good way to provide both viewpoints, and Kaiser Health summarized the issue very well on their blog, linking to multiple different publications that provide a diversity of perspectives. You can read about it from Kaiser Health HERE.

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