How Much Does Short-Term Health Insurance Cost? Average Premium for Short-Term Coverage Declines, eHealth Report Finds

Survey of short-term health insurance buyers finds that half (50%)
bought short-term because it was more affordable than other alternatives

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Today eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH), which operates eHealth.com,
the nation’s first and largest private online health insurance exchange, published
a report
on costs and trends in the short-term health insurance
market identifying average premiums and deductibles.


The report includes results from a survey of short-term health insurance
policy holders exploring their feelings about and reasons for purchasing
short-term coverage.

“Short-term health insurance is not a substitute for major medical
health insurance, but many of our customers will feel the pressure to
consider alternatives like short-term insurance until Congress and the
Trump Administration are able to take action to make individual and
family health insurance more affordable,” said eHealth CEO Scott
Flanders. “In the interim, short-term products continue to serve as an
important stop-gap option for people who failed to enroll during
Obamacare’s open enrollment period or who are currently being priced out
of the market for traditional major medical coverage.”

Mr. Flanders continued, “If implemented, I believe the GOP replacement
plan that was introduced on Monday will be very effective at stabilizing
the individual health insurance market, bringing in young and healthy
people, and lowering overall costs.”

The full report, Costs
and Trends in the Short-Term Health Insurance Market, 2013-2016
is
available in the company’s media
center
. Highlights of the report include the following:

  • 121,000+ short-term application were submitted at eHealth in 2016: This
    is almost twice the number of short-term applications submitted in
    2013, the year before major provisions of the Obamacare law took effect
  • Monthly short-term premiums decreased in 2016: The average
    monthly premium for short-term plans decreased 5% for individuals
    (from $116 to $110) and 2% for families (from $283 to $276) between
    2015 and 2016
  • 57% of short-term customers were young adults: More than half
    (57%) of short-term applicants were between the ages of 18 and 34
  • Affordability makes short-term coverage appealing: Seven-in-ten
    survey respondents (70%) said they liked the affordable monthly
    premium costs of their short-term plan
  • 65% reviewed their eligibility for premium tax credits: A
    majority of survey respondents said they had looked into whether they
    would qualify for government subsidies to purchase major medical
    coverage before choosing short-term coverage instead

Short-term health insurance plans offer temporary, limited coverage
compared to major medical health insurance plans. In addition to
providing coverage only for limited periods of time, short-term products
do not meet the coverage requirements of the Affordable Care Act (the
law known as Obamacare) and may leave enrollees open to federal tax
penalties. Short-term plans typically do not provide coverage for
preventive care or pre-existing medical conditions. Also unlike major
medical plans, it is possible to be declined for a short-term plan based
on an applicant’s personal medical history.

Despite these considerations, many health insurance shoppers turn to
short-term health insurance plans to reduce their risk when not covered
by a major medical plan, or because short-term plans typically have
lower monthly premiums than major medical plans.

The findings presented in eHealth’s Costs
and Trends in the Short-Term Health Insurance Market
report are
based solely on short-term health insurance plans selected by eHealth
customers during the 2013-2016 calendar years, and on a voluntary survey
of consumers who purchased short-term coverage through eHealth. For more
information, refer to the Methodology section at the end of the report.

eHealth

eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH) owns eHealth.com, the
nation’s first and largest private online health insurance exchange
where individuals, families and small businesses can compare health
insurance products from leading insurers side by side and purchase and
enroll in coverage online. eHealth offers thousands of individual,
family and small business health plans underwritten by many of the
nation’s leading health insurance companies. eHealth (through its
subsidiaries) is licensed to sell health insurance in all 50 states and
the District of Columbia. eHealth also offers educational resources and
powerful online and pharmacy-based tools to help Medicare beneficiaries
navigate Medicare health insurance options, choose the right plan and
enroll in select plans online through Medicare.com (www.Medicare.com),
eHealthMedicare.com (www.eHealthMedicare.com)
and PlanPrescriber.com (www.PlanPrescriber.com).

For more health insurance news and information, visit eHealth’s Consumer
Resource Center
.

Contacts

DMA Communications for eHealth, Inc.
Sande Drew, 916-207-7674
sande.drew@ehealth.com
or
eHealth,
Inc.
Nate Purpura, 650-210-3115
nate.purpura@ehealth.com

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