What Is Short-Term Health Insurance?
As it sounds, short-term health insurance is a policy that provides temporary coverage, usually from several months up to a year. Short-term health insurance isn’t regulated by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which means plans don’t have to provide the minimum essential health benefits mandated by the ACA. (These benefits include inpatient and outpatient hospital care, mental health services and prescription drug coverage.) Short-term plans also don’t have to cover pre-existing conditions. The plans are designed for healthy people and generally have caps on how much they will pay for certain services or in total.
Short-term health insurance plans can have initial terms of up to 364 days and can be renewed for up to three years, though some states have stricter rules about duration. You can sign up for this temporary coverage at any time of the year, as opposed to just once a year like with the open enrollment period for marketplace plans.