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Expanded Short Term Health  -  Short term health insurance comparison

Short term health insurance comparison


Short term health insurance comparison


So you need to fill a gap in coverage.


Maybe up to 90 days.


Or you're interested in the new expanded Trump short term plans up to 364 days.


How do you go about comparing them?


  • What about the carriers?
  • How do we compare them?


Granted, we may only need 60 days of coverage.


We still want to make sure they're going to pay when you get in an accident or have something big happen.


We also want to make sure the best doctors are available.


What about out of network benefits?


So let's get to it.


You can always go right to the quote page here:

How to quote Trump short term health plans


Otherwise, let's get into the comparison:



There's no cost for our assistance. ZERO!


Call us at 800-320-6269 or email with any questions.

Quick introduction to short term health plans


Before we jump into the comparison, what exactly are comparing??


Short term health insurance traditionally was designed to cover gaps in coverage.


  • Time between job insurance
  • Waiting periods
  • People in transition


That expanded slightly with the new Open Enrollment brought about by the ACA (Obamacare) laws.


  • Missed Open Enrollment
  • Lapsed coverage and can't enroll right away


Now there's a whole new expansion of short term needs.


  • People who can't afford ACA laws (no tax credit)
  • People just looking for catastrophic health coverage at a lower cost


Either way, short term health plans are different from ACA plans.


It's important to understand the differences:

ACA Obamacare versus short term health plans


Make sure to check out our article on short term plans versus ACA plans here.


Why is short term health plans in the news so much now?

The new expansion of short term health


Trump announced on Aug 1st, 2018 that short term plans would undergo three major expansions.

Really, it was a reversion to what we had before Obama's restriction in 2015.


Here are the three main changes:

3 changes to short term health plans


All this "change" has impact the carriers available for short term.


Let's look at who is in the market now.

What carriers offer short term health insurance


Many health insurance companies left the short term market since 2014.


  • Some left around 2014 so as not to hurt the new ACA marketplace.
  • Some left in 2015 after Obama restricted duration to 90 days


Either way, we were left with two legitimate carriers:


  • IHC (partnered with Blue Cross Blue Shield)
  • UnitedHealthOne (offered by United Health)


We expect other carriers to come back onto the market since the new short term plans will function almost like a secondary market to the ACA plans.


Especially for people who do not qualify for a tax credit and just want catastrophic coverage.


We'll look at comparing the two companies separately.


Since they're both solid players, let's dive right into the plans!


Comparing the short term health carrier plans


Luckily, the short term plans offered by both companies are pretty comparable on the big ticket items.


UnitedHealthOne offers more options in terms of how you can mix and match.


The main options are:


  • Deductible
  • Maximum benefit
  • Co-insurance
  • Out of Pocket Max


IHC has a more streamlined plan design with a catastrophic plan focus.


Let's look at each category.


Maximum term benefit (per person/per term)


This is the maximum amount the carrier will pay for the term of policy.


  • IHC has one option at $2M.
  • UnitedHealthOne may offer between $250K and $2M depending on plan/State.


Deductible (per person/per term)


The deductible is the amount you pay first before getting help from the policy (except for the negotiated rates in-network).


  • IHC has a range of $1000-$5000 deductibles.
  • UnitedHealthOne offers a choice of $1000, $2500, $5000, $10000, or $12500




Co-insurance is the percentage you pay after the deductible is met until the out of pocket max is met.


  • IHC has an 80/20 or 50/50 option
  • UnitedHealthOne offers a choice of 0, 20, 30 or 40% that you pay depending on plan type.


You can quote both short term health companies here:

How to quote Trump short term health plans


Let's look at another major consideration between the carriers.



Short term health carrier networks


The short term plans with the carriers are pretty comparable.


What about the networks of doctors and hospitals?


Some good news here and also some differences.


Both have very extensive networks available for short term.


IHC uses the MultiPlan PPO network with almost 1M doctors nationwide.


You can search it here.


UnitedHealthOne uses their UnitedHealthcare Choice network with 1M doctors and 6000 hospitals nationwide.


These are actually more robust than what we can find on the individual/family ACA markets in most areas.


So what's the distinction?


IHC's network is a PPO.

UnitedHealthOne's network functions as an EPO.


PPO versus EPO


Both function the same way in-network:


  • You don't need a primary care physician
  • You refer yourself out
  • You're not locked into a geographic area


Where they are different is out-of-network!


In a non-emergency, you will have NO benefits out of network with an EPO plan.


With a PPO plan, you'll have benefits out of network but don't expect them to be great.


The benefits are much smaller out of network.

Let's look at each company a little more closely.

IHC short term introduction


IHC short term health plans


You can find our IHC short term health review here.


IHC has been in the health insurance market for decades now.


They're big introduction to many people is when Blue Cross Blue Shield partnered with them to market and offer short term health plans.


Many of the Blues had left the short term market and needed an option to provide their members who missed open enrollment or lapsed coverage.


They partnered with IHC and the rest is history!


As a result, they have become one of the dominant short term carriers on the market.


Again, check out the full review but we're happy to help with any questions.

You can quote IHC short term health plans here.

UnitedHealthOne short term introduction

unitedone short term health plans


UnitedHealthOne is offered by United Health through GoldenRule.


United Health is one of the biggest carriers in the US with a strong pedigree across all markets...especially the employer health insurance market.


This adds a level of stability to their short term health product.


You can check out our full review of UnitedHealthOne short term here.


To quote UnitedHealthOne short term plans:

How to quote Trump short term health plans

Key concerns when comparing short term carriers


Okay...they both offer pretty comparable plans and types of coverage.

Short term is short term.


It's catastrophic coverage by nature.


You can learn about short term versus Obamacare plans here.


So...what do we compare?


Based on our experience helping 10's of 1000's of short term clients over 25 years:


  • Availability
  • Cost
  • Plan design
  • Network difference

We've had a good track record with both companies in terms of paying out when expected.


It then becomes a question of availability and cost to benefit comparison.


Let's look at these in more detail.


Availability of short term health carriers


The two major companies are not available in every State.


That's a deciding factor right there.




short term health plans by State


We expect this list to change quote a bit so check the quoting page here to see what's available in your area.


If you only have one carrier available, that may answer the question right there.


Easy comparison!


If we happen to have both available, let's look at cost.


You can run your short term health quote here.


For apples to apples, compare the $5K deductible, $5K out of pocket, with $2M max term benefit at 40% or 50%.


That gives us a good benchmark for the two carriers.


If you want much richer coverage, that's UnitedHealthOne which offers enhanced benefits.


Since most people are using short term to address catastrophic health care needs, it usually makes sense to go less rich.


That may change as people use the Trump expansion of short term as functional coverage for a full year.


That starts in 2019.


The final consideration is network difference.


They both have big networks but IHC's PPO is better than UnitedHealthOne's EPO.


The difference is slight but there.


Your doctor may be in both networks but an anesthesiologist might be out of network.


If non-emergency, there may be no benefits with an EPO.


It's nice to have the flexibility although you should always make sure your providers are in network!


We're happy to help you compare the options available.


There's no cost for our assistance as licensed Short term health insurance agents.

How to quote different short term carriers


You can quote the main short term health plans here:

How to quote Trump short term health plans


Each link will bring up the online quoting and enrollment tool by carrier.


The quote page will pop up in a separate window so that you can quickly compare back and forth.


Get answers to common questions on quoting and enrolling short term plans here.

How to enroll in short term health


The application process is comparable and pretty easy with either carrier.


You can access it right through the quote link above.


Everything is online now.


There is a simple health questionnaire with short term enrollment.


Make sure to answer the questions honestly.


If we can answer "no" honestly to the health questions, we generally have no issue getting coverage.


The quote will show the maximum benefit period but you can always cancel month to month.

Review of short term health insurance carrier and plan comparison


The short term health market is in flux!


It's been that way since 2014.


It's been shrinking significantly since that period as the ACA law transformed the market.


It's about to change again.

Just as significantly!


With Trump's expansion of short term to 364 days and 3 years potential renewals, many carriers may come back onto the market.


As they do, we'll add them to this comparison.


For now, we have IHC (partnered with Blue Cross Blue Shield) and UnitedHealthOne.


Two strong carriers with comparable types of coverage.

 We're happy to help with either option at no cost to you.


Use our 25+ years as short term health agents to your advantage!


Quote the new Expanded 364 Day Short Term Health Plans by carrier here


Again, there is absolutely no cost to you for our services.  Call 800-320-6269 Today!



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