Short-term health insurance fills gaps for people who experience a lapse in coverage because they are between jobs or waiting for Medicare to kick in. These policies don’t need to meet Affordable Care Act standards, meaning they don’t usually offer essential health benefits and can reject those with pre-existing conditions. Coverage lasts from weeks to months, but less than a year, although you can extend it beyond the initial term.
In Indiana, MoneyGeek determined that the best overall short-term health insurance provider is National General Accident & Health, followed by Companion Life Insurance Company, with scores of 95 and 78, respectively. Nevertheless, the best company depends on your needs.
Short-term plans may not offer the coverage you need in the long run. If cost is an issue, research marketplace options and determine whether you qualify for subsidies. That way, you’ll find the right long-term coverage at an affordable price.
Best Companies for Short-Term Health Insurance in Indiana
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 Indiana
Based on maximum out-of-pocket (MOOPs) costs and other cost-sharing options, MoneyGeek's study ranked the following companies as the best short-term health insurance providers in Indiana:
- National General Accident & Health: 95 out of 100
- Companion Life Insurance Company: 78 out of 100
- Independence American Insurance Company: 70 out of 100
Companion Life Insurance Company and Independence American Insurance Company have similar average MOOPs — $12,438 and $12,833, respectively. Meanwhile, National General Accident & Health is undeniably the most affordable, with an average MOOP of $7,500.
National General Accident & Health
National General Accident & Health ranks first in Indiana for short-term health insurance, with a score of 95 out of 100. It offers dental, accident and critical illness insurance. This provider's short-term policies are flexible, allowing buyers to select plan lengths, options and deductibles.
The company has more than 49,000 agents and gets an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. Indiana-based employers can also explore the provider's solutions for protecting employees.
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Going without health insurance for a few months may seem like a good way to save money, especially if you can pay for one or two doctor visits out of pocket. However, if you get into an accident or need emergency surgery, you could face thousands of dollars in medical bills.
Best Cheap Short-Term Health Insurance
National General Accident & Health offers the cheapest short-term health insurance in Indiana for budget-conscious consumers. This insurer charges an average maximum out-of-pocket cost of $7,500.
When shopping for an affordable insurance policy, it's tempting to focus on the monthly premium. But out-of-pocket costs are another important consideration. Make sure you pick a plan that meets your needs and fits your budget.
National General Accident & Health
National General Accident & Health offers the cheapest short-term medical plans that cover a limited number of health care services. Although it is the most affordable, its plans do not have the same level of healthcare coverage as more expensive options. They are best for healthy individuals who want to protect their health temporarily.
The company’s website also offers an option to tailor plans based on an individual's personal information and pricing preference. This option can help buyers quickly select a flexible insurance plan.
Before purchasing a short-term health insurance plan, you must understand what it will and will not cover. Short-term health insurance is not intended to replace a marketplace plan. It's a stopgap measure that provides emergency coverage during certain periods in your life.
Short-term plans do not offer the same coverage as long-term ones and may exclude coverage for pre-existing conditions. Additionally, the insurer may not renew your policy if you develop a medical condition during the coverage term.
Best Short-Term Health Insurance Between Jobs
When people between jobs shop for short-term health insurance plans, they must consider out-of-pocket costs. Low premiums usually mean high MOOPs, so such plans may not suit those requiring frequent medical attention.
MoneyGeek focused on monthly premiums and cost-sharing options to determine the best short-term health insurance companies in Indiana for unemployed individuals. These are:
- National General Accident & Health: $143 per month
- Companion Life Insurance Company: $145 per month
- Independence American Insurance Company: $171 per month
While the first- and second-place companies are cheaper, our research revealed that Independence American Insurance Company offers more plan options.
National General Accident & Health
National General Accident & Health is the best short-term insurer for buyers who are between jobs. Buyers can select the duration and coverage that works best for their situation.
The company strives to meet its customer’s needs in innovative ways. Policies can last from 30 days to a year and give members access to large healthcare networks like Cigna’s.
Generally, it's best to choose an affordable marketplace plan that covers essential health benefits instead of extending your short-term health insurance. However, if open enrollment is a few months away or the start date of your new job is delayed, extending your short-term insurance will bridge the gap.
How Does Short-Term Health Insurance Work in Indiana?
Short-term health insurance can fill gaps in coverage when you're between jobs, switching to a new plan or if your current policy is canceled. As its name implies, it isn't intended as a long-term solution, unlike a marketplace plan.
Keep in mind that short-term health insurance plans cover limited services. They may not cover all of the essential health benefits required by the Affordable Care Act for individual and family plans.
In Indiana, short-term plans are required to have a maximum benefit of at least $2 million. Previously, short-term plans were limited to six months and could not be renewed. Now, the state allows policyholders to keep plans for 364 days and then renew.
How to Buy Short-Term Health Insurance in Indiana
Getting a short-term health insurance policy in Indiana isn't as complicated as some think. MoneyGeek breaks down the process for you, step by step.
Determine How Long You Need Coverage
Generally, short-term health insurance plans range from three months to a year. Before shopping around for a policy, determine how long you need your coverage to last. Doing so will help ensure you have sufficient health insurance coverage if you switch jobs, lose your coverage temporarily or are waiting for open enrollment.
Assess Your Health Care Needs
Under the Affordable Care Act, health plans are required to include coverage for essential health benefits. Short-term plans, however, don't have to meet these requirements. As such, it's important to consider your health care needs when selecting a plan. If you need prescription drugs or immediate care, you may want to explore plans that adequately cover these services.
Research Providers and Available Plans
When shopping for the right insurance, be prepared to do your homework. Consider factors like medical conditions, deductibles and prescription coverage, then compare providers to make sure you're getting the best deal — and that you're covered when you need to use your insurance.
When comparing short-term health insurance vs. ACA-compliant marketplace health insurance, ask yourself what you need. Short-term plans provide coverage for a few months to a year but don't usually cover all the essential health benefits, preventive medicine or pre-existing conditions.
Marketplace plans are required to cover essential health benefits and pre-existing conditions. You can purchase these plans during the open enrollment period that typically starts on November 1 and lasts about six weeks. However, people who experience certain qualifying life circumstances may be eligible for special enrollment outside this period.
FAQs About Short-Term Health Insurance in Indiana
To help you better understand short-term health insurance in Indiana, MoneyGeek answered common questions, including what it covers and how long you can keep or stay on it.
About Brenna Kelly, Licensed Health Insurance Agent
- Companion Life. "About Companion Life." Accessed August 17, 2022.
- Companion Life. "The Companion Life Difference." Accessed August 17, 2022.
- Indiana Government. "Short-Term, Limited-Duration Health Plans in Indiana Consumer Information." Accessed August 17, 2022.
- National General. "Homepage." Accessed August 17, 2022.
- National General. "Individuals." Accessed August 17, 2022.