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When the U.S. implemented strict state-by-state stay-at-home regulations to curb the spread of COVID-19, the shutdown was only meant to last 14 days. However, over a year later, more than two-thirds of the country remains holed-up in their homes, with many businesses operating at limited capacity. Due to continued quarantine regulations (varying state-by-state), many corporations have shuttered their doors indefinitely, leaving countless individuals jobless.
Whether it’s the inability to pay rent or the fear of contracting COVID-19 leading to steep medical bills, anxiety is at an all-time high for jobless individuals. Mass closures left many Americans scrambling for ways to save money and reduce monthly expenses. However, while canceling subscriptions and forgoing daily coffees can save you a few dollars month-to-month, many look to more significant expenses when cutting costs.
Seeing as health insurance is one of the most significant expenses each month, many unemployed Americans forgo costs altogether by opting-out of plans. Although canceling your health insurance will save you some cash up front, you run the risk of steep fees and racked-up medical bills should you fall prey to illness or injury.
While an average trip to your doctor will run you between 70-250 dollars without insurance, the real terror is the cost of spending a night or two in the hospital. Whether you break your arm or end up in the hospital fighting COVID-19, the average hospital stay could cost you more than fifty thousand dollars without proper healthcare. Although it can be challenging to allocate funds with a strict budget, signing onto a plan will ensure reasonable medical costs should unexpected ailments afflict you.
If you’re unsure where to start researching inexpensive healthcare packages, consider searching for short-term non-ACA health plans to find affordable options that will keep you safe and sound during the global pandemic. If you’re skeptical about non-employer-sponsored healthcare, read on to learn about the numerous benefits associated with short-term insurance packages.
Short-term healthcare programs are great for filling the gap between jobs
Finding healthcare during periods of unemployment can be tricky, as you don’t want to sign onto a long-term plan and restrict access to employer-sponsored packages once you’ve secured a position. Short-term healthcare is perfect for down periods, protecting you while you search for your next career. Whether you’re looking for month-to-month protection or a yearly renewal package, you can find the perfect plan for your specific needs via online marketplaces. Plus, you can always extend your package if job-hunting falls short.
The big expenses are covered
While short-term plans typically don’t provide coverage for pre-existing medical conditions or preventive care, they cover hospital and other emergency medical bills. Unexpected expenses are often the most costly, which means signing onto a short-term plan can save you big if you fall prey to injury or illness during your period of unemployment.
Easy to apply for
Affordable Care Act (ACA) health care plans are only available during open enrollment periods, which last from November to December each year. Because of sign-on restrictions, it can be challenging to apply for standard packages during off-periods. Luckily, short-term health care plans offer year-round open enrollment, which means you’re eligible to sign up restriction-free.
Larger networks of doctors
Typical ACA insurance plans reduce costs by restricting provider networks, resulting in limited physician availability. However, non-ACA short-term health care plans remove most limits, allowing you to visit various doctors without worrying about out-of-network costs. Simply research physicians near you and inquire about fees and coverage before scheduling your appointment.
Finding yourself unemployed during a global pandemic is daunting. However, if you’ve lost your job, signing up for a short-term healthcare plan can ease unemployment stress by keeping you safe and sound while you search for a new position.