Can I buy health insurance that is not Obamacare?
Wondering if you can buy health insurance that is not Obamacare? The answer is yes. But, it’s not as simple as that.
There are a very limited number of non-Obamacare health plans offered off the Health Insurance Marketplace. These plans are available for purchase at any time. That means you can buy them even outside of Open Enrollment Period or a qualifying Special Enrollment Period. These health insurance plans are only available for purchase through agents, brokers, or directly though some insurance companies. They are also available through some online health insurance sellers.
Pros and cons of short-term health insurance
These plans, sometimes called short-term health insurance, typically do not meet the standards for health insurance as outlined in the Affordable Care Act and will not be available or shown to you when you shop the Marketplace during Open Enrollment (due to their not meeting these standards), whether you shop through HealthCare.gov or HealthSherpa.
Though these plans may be cheaper than some plans on the Marketplace, they aren’t as comprehensive. Among other things, these plans typically do not cover maternity care or mental health care. They also typically don’t cover preventive care, prescription drugs, or any pre-existing conditions. Experts do not advise using these short-term plans to replace regular health insurance because the health coverage they provide is not adequate.
Keep in mind that Obamacare can be quite affordable and you may qualify for a subsidy. In 2019, most of those who enrolled in health insurance plans through HealthSherpa has monthly premiums of only $35 a month or less. And 1 in 4 of all HealthSherpa enrollees had premiums of $2.50 per month or less. Grab our free step-by-step guide to enrolling in Marketplace health insurance here to get started.
You can shop for an Obamacare plan, see if you’re eligible for a subsidy or tax credit, and compare prices here. You can also call the HealthSherpa Consumer Advocate team at (872) 228-2549 for help finding the most affordable plan for your budget and needs.