You may have to wait until the next open enrollment period with your parent’s health plan to be added to your parent’s health insurance coverage. However, if you’ve recently lost other comprehensive health insurance coverage, you might be able to enroll even before open enrollment if you meet the health plan’s requirements for a special enrollment period.
Gold health insurance plans have the lowest variable costs, such as deductibles and copays, that you'd need to cover before your policy would pay for medical care. However, they also come with the most expensive monthly rates. Therefore, these health plans are best if you have high expected medical costs, such as ongoing prescriptions, or are concerned about being able to pay out of pocket for an unexpected condition.
Covered California has also helped Californians lower their prescription medication costs. In 2016, the state exchange rolled out a cap on prescription costs. Available to consumers purchasing off-exchange plans as well, the cap is linked to the metal level of the plan purchased and is $250 per specialty medication per month for the majority of consumers.
Medi-Cal offers low-cost or free health coverage to eligible Californian residents with limited income. Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace where Californians can shop for health plans and access financial assistance if they qualify for it. Health plans available through Medi-Cal and Covered California both offer a similar set of important benefits, called essential health benefits.
The cheapest purchase you'll ever make is the one you don't make. It's entirely possible that you don't have to buy individual health insurance at all. Depending on which state you live in and what your income is, you might qualify for Medicaid. You can contact your nearest Medicaid office, or go to Healthcare.gov to determine if you're eligible (see step three below for the latter route).
Health insurance can be expensive, but before you decide to go without, take a careful look at the risks. For instance, according to WebMD, there’s a 1 in 5 chance you will land in the ER at some point between the ages of 25 and 44, a trip that could cost you as much as $1,450 a pop. If you need surgery on a broken arm, you could be on the hook for more than $16,000 if you’re without insurance.
Low cost health insurance plans are available from Blue Cross of California, Blue Shield, Health Net, Oscar, Aetna, and Kaiser Permanente. California Health Plans specializes in providing health insurance plans for individuals, families, and small businesses. Our website offers free health insurance quotes and allows you to compare Blue Cross insurance plans, Blue Shield insurance plans, and other medical plans.
If you’re wondering how to get cheap health insurance, and also happen qualify for Medicaid, then this is the medical insurance plan for you. Medicaid is funded jointly by the federal and state governments. Those who are eligible will have access to the same benefits as a marketplace or private health insurance plan and still receive the same high-quality care.
In Illinois, short-term health insurance can be purchased from insurance providers outside of the state health insurance exchange. The state currently restricts short-term health insurance lengths to less than six months and allows the plans to be renewable for up to 36 months. In addition, you cannot purchase a new short-term plan from the same insurer within 60 days of the end of your last short-term policy.
Prior to the ACA’s reforms in the individual health insurance market, medical history was a factor in eligibility for private plans in nearly every state, including California. Applicants with pre-existing conditions were often unable to buy individual plans in the private market, or if coverage was available it came with a higher premium or with exclusions on pre-existing conditions.

There’s another scenario where you might be able to get coverage if you missed the open enrollment period. You may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. This happens after certain life events such as losing health coverage, moving, getting married, having a baby or adopting a child. But if this happens, you’ll need to apply within 60 days of that event, otherwise you’ll have to wait until the next open enrollment period.

Medicaid works slightly differently in each state, but to be eligible, you must meet low-income guidelines. In many states, you’ll qualify for Medicaid if your income is 138 percent of federal poverty level or less. However, some states have stricter eligibility criteria. In those states, you must meet low-income guidelines and also be a member of a medically vulnerable group such as a pregnant woman, an elderly person, blind, disabled, or a child.
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There are several exemptions from the fee that may apply to people who have no income or very low incomes. See the full list of exemptions for 2018. If you have an exemption, you don’t need to pay the fee for being uncovered when you file 2018 taxes in the spring. Note: Starting with the 2019 plan year (for which you’ll file taxes in April 2020), the fee no longer applies. You won't need an exemption for 2019 and beyond.
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Some consumers choose plans based solely on online research. But without guidance, it can be tough to fully understand the nuances of a plan and how it compares to other options. First, make sure you’re actually buying insurance, not some other product such as a discount card – one key way to tell is by checking with your state regulator that the company selling the product is considered a legitimate insurer. Be very careful about limited products such as temporary insurance, which last for a set period of time, since you may not be able to renew such a plan at the end of that period.

California residents voted on two healthcare-related propositions in November 2016: Proposition 61, The California Drug Price Relief Act, did not pass (it would have prohibited state agencies from paying more for any prescription drug than the lowest price the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs pays for the same drug). But Proposition 56 passed, increasing the per-pack cigarette tax from $0.87 to $2.87; a majority of revenues are slated to fund health care for low-income Californians.
SB4 – The California Senate passed SB4 in early June 2015, the Assembly in September, and on October 9, 2015, Gov. Brown signed it into law. The legislation, renamed the Health for All Kids Act, focuses on Medi-Cal access for undocumented immigrant children under the age of 19. SBF will take effect in May 2016, and it has been estimated that 170,000 undocumented immigrant children will then become eligible for Medi-Cal based on their household income alone.

Bottom line: There are lots of limitations to short-term plans, and these plans have a lot of critics. Although they may be your cheapest option, it won’t really be cheap health insurance in the long run, if you may end up spending a lot more than you bargained for, and experts warn against using them except as a last resort in between jobs. Otherwise, a low-cost catastrophic, bronze, or possibly even silver plan will offer a better affordable health insurance option.
In most cases, your coverage will take effect either the first of the next month, or the first of the month after that, depending on how late in the month you enroll. (Typically, if you enroll during the first 15 days of the month, your coverage will take effect on the first day of the next month. Enroll after the 15th and coverage won’t kick in until the first of the following month.)
In Illinois, short-term health insurance can be purchased from insurance providers outside of the state health insurance exchange. The state currently restricts short-term health insurance lengths to less than six months and allows the plans to be renewable for up to 36 months. In addition, you cannot purchase a new short-term plan from the same insurer within 60 days of the end of your last short-term policy.

For 2018 coverage, 1.52 million people had enrolled in coverage during the open enrollment period, which was slightly lower than the previous year’s enrollment. (This was probably because California encouraged unsubsidized Silver-plan enrollees to shop off-exchange for 2018 coverage, in order to avoid having to pay the extra premiums that were added to on-exchange Silver plans to cover the cost of CSR.)
Cheap health insurance plans in Pennsylvania are available through the state exchange, though some shoppers can qualify for Medicaid depending on their household income. To help you find the best health insurance coverage, we evaluated all Pennsylvania plans and found that in most of the state, either the Geisinger Marketplace HMO 30/60/4650 or UPMC Advantage Silver $3,500/$25 was the cheapest Silver plan available. These insurers aren't available on the marketplace in every Pennsylvania county, but they consistently offered some of the best health insurance rates across different tiers of coverage in regions where they're listed.
For costs, benefits, exclusions, limitations, eligibility, and renewal terms, call a licensed Product Advisor to discuss your health insurance options. 1 UnitedHealthcare received the highest numerical score in the proprietary J.D. Power 2013-2015, 2017-2018 (tied in 2018) Vision Plan Satisfaction Reports. Report measures opinions of consumers with vision plans. Visit www.jdpower.com/awards 2 Short-term health insurance is medically underwritten and does not cover preexisting conditions. This coverage is not required to comply with certain federal market requirements for health insurance, principally those contained in the Affordable Care Act. Be sure to check your policy carefully to make sure you are aware of any exclusions or limitations regarding coverage of preexisting conditions or health benefits (such as hospitalization, emergency services, maternity care, preventive care, prescription drugs, and mental health and substance use disorder services). Your policy might also have lifetime and/or annual dollar limits on health benefits. If this coverage expires or you lose eligibility for this coverage, you might have to wait until an open enrollment period to get other health insurance coverage. This coverage is not “minimum essential coverage.” 3 The coverage term is one day less than 3 years. This coverage is not required to comply with certain federal market requirements for health insurance, principally those contained in the Affordable Care Act. Be sure to check your policy carefully to make sure you are aware of any exclusions or limitations regarding coverage of preexisting conditions or health benefits (such as hospitalization, emergency services, maternity care, preventive care, prescription drugs, and mental health and substance use disorder services). Your policy might also have lifetime and/or annual dollar limits on health benefits. If this coverage expires or you lose eligibility for this coverage, you might have to wait until an open enrollment period to get other health insurance coverage. 4 National Association of Dental Plans. Who has dental benefits? Retrieved from http://www.nadp.org/Dental_Benefits_Basics/Dental_BB_1.aspx#_ftn1 5 This is a supplement to health insurance and is not a substitute for the minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Lack of major medical coverage (or other minimum essential coverage) may result in an additional payment with your taxes. 6 Underwritten by Sirius International Insurance Corporation or United States Fire Insurance Company. 7 Optional benefits require an additional premium cost. Products vary by state.
And, sure, you might think to yourself, “Well, I’ll just put aside money every month in my savings account in case I have to go to a doctor.” That may work out fine for awhile, but what if you break your leg, for instance? The average cost to fix a broken leg, according to HealthCare.gov, is $7,500. And hopefully you won’t wind up in the hospital for three days. That will typically run you $30,000.

Whether or not your state expanded Medicaid, you may be eligible for federal assistance when you buy a health plan through your state’s marketplace. This assistance could lower the premiums you pay and reduce how much money you must pay out of your own pocket when you seek medical care. Although premiums for marketplace plans are increasing significantly in many states, if you qualify for premium tax credits, the tax credit should cover most or nearly all of the cost increase.  In general, you may be eligible for tax credits to lower your premium if you are single and your annual 2019 income is between $12,140 to $48,560 or if your household income is between $20,780 to $83,120 for a family of three (the lower income limits are higher in states that expanded Medicaid). The range differs for families of different sizes. If you buy a plan through the marketplace and your income is between $12,140 and $30,350 for a single person ($20,780 to $51,950 for a family of three), you can also qualify for help with cost sharing. Special modified silver plans are available with lower deductibles, copays, and annual out-of-pocket limits on cost sharing.
Humana health products are underwritten and issued by Humana Insurance Company which is financially responsible for these products. No member of the State Farm family of companies is financially responsible for these products. Humana, Inc, Humana MarketPOINT Inc, and Humana Insurance Company are not affiliates of State Farm. Please call a State Farm agent for more detailed information.

Before making a final decision to purchase a policy, closely review the full plan explanation, sometimes called the certificate of coverage or the evidence of coverage, and seek help from the Web brokerage’s agents or other experts if you don’t understand it. Insurers may let you review this this document only after you tentatively choose a plan and are accepted for coverage.


Despite the headlines about the ACA being ruled unconstitutional, it’s important to understand that this case is far from over and could eventually make its way to the Supreme Court. Shortly after the ruling was announced, CMS Administrator Seema Verma tweeted that “the exchanges are still open for business” and that “there is no impact to current coverage or coverage in a 2019 plan.”
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Whatever your stance on health care reform, there’s no denying that the ACA has given the uninsured a new option. The ACA, the legislation behind the new health insurance exchanges, aims to make affordable health insurance available to everyone regardless of pre-existing conditions that traditionally make plans too expensive (or keep them out of reach entirely). It also prohibits insurers from dropping you because you get sick, and puts an end to lifetime and yearly plan limits for essential care.
When you have employer-sponsored health insurance, your employer usually pays part of the monthly premiums and you pay part of the monthly premiums. Your share of the premiums are deducted from your paycheck automatically so you don’t have to remember to pay each month. In most cases, this payroll deduction is taken out of your paycheck before your income taxes are calculated; this way, you’re not paying income taxes on the money you spent on health insurance premiums.
None of the insurers are available in every county in Pennsylvania, however either Geisinger Health Plan or UPMC is available in most regions of the state. These insurers offered the cheapest Silver health plans in the 61 counties where they are listed on the exchange, so we recommend starting with them when searching for the best health insurance policy for yourself. If you live in a county in Pennsylvania where Geisinger or UPMC isn't offered (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Franklin, Montgomery or Philadelphia), you can typically find the most affordable health plan rates from either the Highmark Health Insurance Co. or Keystone.
The higher metal tier health plans, such as Gold and Platinum tiers, come with higher premiums, but significantly lower out of pocket expenses, such as deductibles, copays and coinsurance. Therefore, they're typically a more cost-effective option if you expect to have consistent or high medical expenses. For instance, people with consistent prescription needs may want to consider Gold and Platinum plans that have cheap out-of-pocket expenses for prescription drugs.
Health insurance costs vary in many ways. Deductibles, premiums, and copayments all play into what your health insurance costs will come out to. eHealth studies have shown that in 2018 the average individual premium was $393 without any subsidies. By comparing quotes, and speaking with a licensed agent, you might be able to find prices significantly lower than this, that still meet your needs. Taking the time to shop around and compare can make a huge difference in what you’re paying for your health insurance.
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