COBRA Continuation Insurance Alternatives

COBRA continuation insurance is available to prevent people from losing their health insurance coverage as the result of a job loss or move to another position. Though this option is available for most people, it is difficult for some people to afford, so there are alternatives available. These alternatives will help people keep health insurance coverage without breaking the bank with COBRA. If you or someone covered by your insurance plan is affected by a pre-existing condition (at least until the new health insurance  legislation comes into effect) or takes a considerable amount of prescription medication, it is likely best for you to stay on the COBRA coverage to ensure you are still well taken care of.

 

Mix and Match

If you need to stay on the COBRA coverage, see if you can find cheaper coverage for the other people in your family. Though this breaks the insurance coverage into multiple bills and payments, it will help you save money in the long run. Having the expenses broken up into separate payments may actually help your budget so you're not paying out a lot of money at once.

 

Find Your Own Coverage

If your staying on COBRA coverage is going to be too much on your financial well being, it may not be bad idea to look into individual and family plans on your own. There are many companies who offer various insurance plans to suite many budgets. If monthly premiums are a concern, look to plans with a higher deductible. If you're having trouble finding a good plan, talk to an agent or two to see what the company can offer you. Think short term if you know you're going to be eligible for another group coverage plan soon. Talk to your existing doctors to see what plans they take to determine if you can get another plan so you don't have to change doctors.

 

Look at Your Children's Insurance

If your children are at an age where they won't be able to be under your coverage for much longer, look into short term health insurance to help them make the transition. Under the new health care legislation passed in March 2010, children will be eligible to remain on your coverage until age 26.

 

If income is a serious issue, look into state programs such as Medicaid to help cover you until you get new coverage under your new job. While Medicaid income limits are incredibly low for adults, it may help to cover the children during the down time. Contact your county Department of Social Services for more information on how to apply. Eligibility requirements and application processes will vary from state to state.

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