Depending on your needs, you can purchase short-term health insurance for several weeks or up to one year. It’s a good option if you’re between jobs or miss open enrollment.
Please note that short-term medical insurance is not ACA-compliant, so it usually doesn’t cover essential health benefits. Moreover, short-term health insurance companies can deny applicants based on their medical histories and pre-existing conditions. Hence, short-term health insurance is not meant to replace market-based plans.
National General Accident & Health and Everest Reinsurance Company are the best short-term health options in Arkansas, scoring 95 and 85, respectively. However, the best insurer for you will provide coverage that meets your needs at an affordable price.
In addition, if you research available subsidies, you might find a marketplace policy that offers superior coverage at a rate similar to a short-term plan.
Best Companies for Short-Term Health Insurance in Arkansas
To determine the best short-term health insurance companies, MoneyGeek analyzed the pricing, plan options and cost-sharing choices for thousands of plans. Within each state, plans were aggregated by company to compile an overview of a short-term health insurance provider. In determining the best short-term providers for specific categories, weights were redistributed to take into account the goal of the health insurance plan.
Please be advised that the costs provided are averages. Actual rates will vary based on consumer profile and location.
Best Overall Short-Term Health Insurance in Arkansas
MoneyGeek’s research found that National General Accident & Health is the best temporary health insurer in Arkansas, earning a score of 95 out of 100.
Our selections for second and third-place medical insurance providers are:
- Everest Reinsurance Company: 85 out of 100
- Companion Life Insurance Company: 63 out of 100
We chose these insurance companies based on average maximum out-of-pocket (MOOP) costs and the variety of cost-sharing options they offer. The winner’s average MOOP is $7,500, whereas the runner-ups’ cost $7,958 and $12,438, respectively.
National General Accident & Health
National General Accident & Health is our top pick for short-term health insurance in Arkansas, with a MoneyGeek score of 95 out of 100. It offers short-term preferred provider organization policies (PPOs), dental, accident and critical illness plans.
National General Accident & Health is available in most states and provides high-end plans at a reasonable rate. Potential policyholders can choose term lengths between three months and three years.
However, National General Accident & Health has a few drawbacks. For instance, it only offers one short-term plan type and has relatively high deductibles for certain plans.
Compare Insurance Rates
Ensure you are getting the best rate for your insurance. Compare quotes from the top insurance companies.
It may be tempting for some to forgo health insurance. We strongly advise against this since accidental injuries and unexpected surgeries can significantly impact your finances, putting you tens of thousands of dollars in debt.
Best Cheap Short-Term Health Insurance
National General Accident & Health has the cheapest short-term health insurance plans in Arkansas, with an average MOOP of $7,500. While low premiums are attractive, the trade-off tends to be higher out-of-pocket expenses. So when you choose a plan based on cost, ensure the coverage matches your specific needs.
National General Accident & Health
The cheapest health insurance company for short-term policies in Arkansas is National General Accident & Health. This provider offers low co-insurance, application fees and out-of-pocket limits for specific plans. Review each plan option to find a suitable policy for your needs.
Before you purchase short-term health insurance in Arkansas, know why you need it. Again, temporary health insurance should not replace a market or long-term plan. Short-term plans are meant to protect you against catastrophic expenses if you have a serious accident.
Short-term health insurance plans don’t cover pre-existing conditions and lack important health benefits. Not to mention, your policy may not be eligible for renewal if you develop an illness during the coverage term.
Best Short-Term Health Insurance Between Jobs
Between jobs, individuals may turn to short-term health plans with cheap premiums. However, cheaper premiums usually entail high MOOPs, so if you regularly see your physician, this might not be a great option for you.
MoneyGeek evaluated premiums and cost-sharing options and found the best options for short-term health insurance between jobs in Arkansas are:
- Companion Life Insurance Company: $141 per month
- UnitedHealthcare: $143 per month
- Everest Reinsurance Company: $150 per month
These companies’ average monthly premiums range between $141–150. However, Companion Life Insurance Company stands out since it offers the cheapest rate and has a fairly short waiting period.
Companion Life Insurance Company
Its short-term health policies are great options for individuals who are between jobs because you can pay a low application fee and purchase relatively affordable plans that cover up to $1 million. Companion Life also offers accident and limited-benefit health insurance plans.
However, Companion Life has limited coverage options for monthly health insurance and limited co-insurance. Take note that term lengths range from three to 12 months, which might not be flexible enough for some.
Let’s say your new job’s starting date is pushed back, or open enrollment is several months away. In these cases, extending short-term insurance is a financially sound decision.
However, purchasing short-term coverage instead of a market plan is not wise. If you’re healthy and prefer a cheap policy, marketplace Catastrophic and Bronze plans are affordable and have the necessary medical benefits.
How Does Short-Term Health Insurance Work in Arkansas?
Short-term insurance serves as a temporary substitute until you can purchase long-term coverage. It usually lasts for a few months and should act as an emergency plan instead of a preventive one.
You can usually renew your short-term insurance if you need to extend it. In Arkansas, it’s possible to have a plan for up to 364 days and then renew it for a maximum of 36 months.
How to Buy Short-Term Health Insurance in Arkansas
Choosing the best temporary health insurance in Arkansas can be challenging. MoneyGeek has a step-by-step guide to give you a headstart.
Determine How Long You Need Coverage
Know or estimate the duration of your health insurance gap so you can choose a suitable term length. Short-term health insurance plans have different durations, ranging from three months to three years. However, you might find insurers that offer plans for several weeks.
Assess Your Health Care Needs
The best short-term health insurance policy for you largely depends on your medical needs. Ask yourself if you need prescriptions or immediate care. You might also want to prioritize a medical insurance provider that offers reasonable deductibles or one that doesn’t have an application fee. Creating a list of non-negotiables might also be a big help.
Research Providers and Available Plans
Most short-term health insurance plans are affordable at first glance. However, you may end up spending more if the plan doesn’t cater to your specific needs. MoneyGeek encourages readers to review each plan’s summary of benefits thoroughly. This way, you’ll find an appropriate policy at a fair price.
Short-term health insurance plans and marketplace health insurance plans have many differences. For instance, short-term plans don’t always offer essential health benefits or cover individuals with pre-existing conditions. Instead, they’re best for emergencies since waiting periods are typically shorter. You may also want to consider short-term health insurance to fill gaps in coverage between jobs.
Meanwhile, marketplace health insurance is ideal for those who want robust benefits, including maternity care, preventive care, routine check-ups, doctor visits, mental health and well-being coverages and more. Short-term plans don’t usually cover these medical needs.
FAQs About Short-Term Health Insurance in Arkansas
Short-term health insurance in Arkansas can be an overwhelming topic. MoneyGeek answered commonly asked questions to help you determine your next steps.
About Brenna Kelly, Licensed Health Insurance Agent