Individual and Family

Can I Get Short Term Health Insurance in Virginia?

Updated on December 07, 2019


Short term health insurance in Virginia is not only available to those who need temporary coverage, it is also an affordable, quick, and flexible option for people looking for health insurance alternatives.

Although short term coverage was originally intended to cover consumers for a short period of time, eHealth studies have found that consumers are opting for short term plans for a variety of reasons. Keep reading to learn more about what short term health insurance in Virginia covers, and why it might be a good coverage option for you.

What does short term health insurance in Virginia offer?

Short term plans usually cover emergency-related medical costs such as outpatient visits, hospital stays, surgeries, and related x-rays and laboratory services at a much larger price point than typical plans approved by the Affordable care Act (ACA). Some more benefits of short term health insurance in Virginia include:

  • Flexibility—you can’t apply at any time of the year, there is no open enrollment period for short term coverage
  • Affordability—prices in the individual market have become unaffordable for many, according to eHealth’s surveys and studies, but short term health insurance provides a cheaper alternatives for those who can’t afford ACA-compliant health insurance on their own
  • Speed—individual plans often require a long application and approval process, and it may take weeks for coverage to begin…but short term health insurance usually only takes a few days at most to begin after you’ve been approved

If you’re worried about the limited coverage that comes with short term health insurance, it may comfort you to know that 58% of respondents replied to an eHealth survey that their short term plan provided them with the benefits they cared about the most—and this all comes at a cost much lower than other plans.

Affordable health insurance in Virginia

Nobody wants to pay ridiculous amounts for health insurance, but prices keep rising year after year on major medical (ACA-compliant) individual health insurance plans. This is probably a huge reason why 27% of respondents to an eHealth survey said they chose short term coverage for financial reasons.

Despite trends of price increase on the individual market, short term plans have remained relatively stable when it comes to pricing. In 2017, short term in Virginia cost $103 a month.

To put that into perspective, in the same year an ACA-compliant individual plan before subsidies, cost $378 per month (which is 244% higher than the average premium for short term plans).

Who should buy short term health insurance in Virginia?

While picking health insurance is a personal choice (and one plan is never going to work for everyone), there are some cases in which short term health insurance in Virginia may work particularly well.

Short term plans are a great way to protect yourself during a gap in coverage due to:

  • Loss of employer-sponsored health insurance due to quitting/losing a job
  • Divorce from a spouse who provided coverage
  • Aging out of a parent’s family health insurance plan
  • Getting dropped from a plan because of failure to pay premiums
  • Waiting for Medicare coverage to begin

As mentioned before, some people are choosing to get health insurance in Virginia and all across the country for reasons besides a gap in coverage. Some of these cases may include:

  • Missing the chance to enroll in a plan for the year during the annual Open Enrollment Period
  • Needing proof of health insurance quickly for a special activity like a trip or a volunteer opportunity (short term coverage does not count as proof of insurance for tax purposes and does not protect against the individual mandate, which still applies up until the 2019 tax season)
  • Being unable to afford ACA-compliant coverage

If you are enrolled in short term coverage beyond the typical 90 day limit, you have the opportunity to re-apply for another short term plan. In fact, 22% of eHealth’s short term customers re-applied for another short term policy in 2017.

This article is for general information and should not be used as a rule book for picking health insurance. If you’re not sure which plan would work best for you, eHealth has licensed agents with whom you can speak personally, about the right health insurance plan for your situation.

Applying for your short term plan

If you’ve decided that short term coverage is right for you, then you’ll be happy to find that the enrollment process is quite simple. Applying involves much less paperwork and personal information than many other plans, approval can happen within a few hours to a few days, and coverage can also begin in just a few days.

Visit eHealth to see what short term plans in Virginia we have for you.

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