MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Scott Flanders, CEO of eHealth, Inc. (Nasdaq: EHTH) (eHealth.com), a leading private online health insurance exchange, today applauded the Trump administration’s proposed rule to reverse an Obama-era limit to the duration of short-term insurance plans.
“This proposed rule is designed to give consumers who are struggling with costs important choices in the health care market. Short-term plans provide consumers who might otherwise go uninsured with a valuable measure of protection at an affordable price,” Flanders said.
The administration’s proposed rule, which would allow the duration of short-term plans to extend up to less than 12 months, would replace an Obama-era regulation that restricted their duration to a maximum of 90 days. The old rule was intended to improve the quality of the risk pool among consumers shopping for ACA plans and help keep the price of major medical health insurance low.
“While the authors of the Affordable Care Act were well intentioned, the balanced risk pools they envisioned never came into being. Too many people were simply priced out of the market. This proposed rule reflects an understanding of that reality, and creates an alternative for consumers who can’t afford an ACA-compliant plan,” Flanders said.
“These plans serve an important function for consumers transitioning between jobs and employer-based health insurance. Extending the duration of short-term plans would offer relief, security and peace of mind for many consumers, particularly those who aren’t able to access subsidies for Obamacare-compliant plans,” Flanders said.
An eHealth analysis of shopping trends among its customers across the country found short-term coverage could, on average, be purchased for about a quarter of the cost of Obamacare-compliant plans for individuals and families. For short-term coverage, the average monthly premium is $110 for individuals and $267 for families. By contrast, the average monthly premium for Obamacare-compliant major medical health insurance plans is $440 for unsubsidized individuals and $1,168 for families.
“Short-term plans don’t offer the same benefits as major medical plans. They are significantly less expensive for a reason, and we’re committed to explaining to consumers precisely what they are and are not buying as they shop for the most appropriate option for themselves and their family,” said Sean Malia, Senior Director of Carrier Relations at eHealth.
eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH) owns eHealth.com, a leading private online health insurance exchange where individuals, families and small businesses can compare health insurance products from brand-name insurers side by side and purchase and enroll in coverage online and over the phone. 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, exceptional telephonic support, 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 or over the phone 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.