STUDY: IN 20 STATES, MILLIONS IN "MEDICAID COVERAGE GAP" COULD SAVE THOUSANDS WITH ALTERNATIVE COVERAGE
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA -- Today AgileHealthInsurance.com released a new study showing term health insurance is half the cost of Obamacare for people in the 20 states that did not expand Medicaid. The analysis, based on government data and a database of term premium rates, reveals consumers in the "Medicaid gap" could save up to $260 a month by enrolling in term insurance rather than Obamacare. The Medicaid gap refers to the situation where individuals make too much for Medicaid but too little to trigger premium subsidies for Obamacare plans on the government marketplace.
Thirty states and the District of Columba have adopted Medicaid expansion, but 20 states have not. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, nearly 4 million low-income uninsured adults fall into a coverage gap because they are not eligible for Obamacare subsidies or for Medicaid coverage.
The analysis compares premiums for the least expensive Obamacare bronze plan with a similar term insurance plan in the most populous city of each state that did not expand eligibility for Medicaid. In 2015, the highest possible out-of-pocket maximum for an individual Obamacare plan was $6,600, and the average deductible for bronze plans was $5,181. The study compares these bronze plans to the least expensive term insurance plan with a deductible no higher than $5,000, an out-of-pocket maximum no higher than $6,000 and a lifetime maximum of at least $1 million.
In looking at premiums for 30-, 40- and 50-year-old nonsmokers, savings for term insurance ranged from 11 percent for a 50-year-old man in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, to 78 percent for a 30-year-old man in Cheyenne, Wyoming.
For those in the Medicaid coverage gap, the average savings per month were $136 for 40-year-old men and $104 for 40-year-old women. For 30-year-old men and women, buying term insurance instead of an Obamacare exchange plan saved $129 and $126 per month, respectively. The largest dollar savings for all ages and genders were in Cheyenne, Wyoming, where 50-year-olds and 40-year-old men would save more than $250 per month with term insurance.
"Finding affordable health insurance coverage is challenging, especially for low-income consumers who don't qualify for subsidies or Medicaid," said Bruce Telkamp, CEO of AgileHealthInsurance.com. "Term health insurance will often be the best health insurance option for these Americans who have been left behind."
Term health insurance does not provide identical coverage as Obamacare plans, and benefit and eligibility differences contribute to the cost savings observed. Consumers apply and, depending on their health status (including pre-existing conditions), they may or may not be eligible for specific plans. With term health insurance, some consumers may be subject to the Obamacare tax, but people in the Medicaid gap qualify for an exemption.
Consumers in the Medicaid gap do not have to pay the Obamacare uninsured tax, and millions are going without coverage. However, choosing term insurance instead of Obamacare can save thousands of dollars in premiums. For more information on premiums in states that did not expand Medicaid, read the article on AgileHealthInsurance's Learning Center.
AgileHealthInsurance.com is a Silicon Valley-based technology company and independently managed division of Health Insurance Innovations, Inc. (NASDAQ: HIIQ). This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are statements other than historical fact, and may include statements relating to goals, plans and projections regarding new markets, products, services, growth strategies, anticipated trends in our business and anticipated changes and developments in the United States health insurance system and laws. Forward-looking statements are based on our current assumptions, expectations and beliefs are generally identifiable by use of words "may," "might," "will," "should," "expects," "plans," "anticipates," "believes," "estimates," "predicts," "potential" or "continue," or similar expressions and involve significant risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, developments and business decisions to differ materially from those contemplated by these statements. These risks and uncertainties include, among other things, our ability to maintain relationships and develop new relationships with health insurance carriers and distributors, our ability to retain our members, the demand for our products, the amount of commissions paid to us or changes in health insurance plan pricing practices, our ability to integrate our acquisitions, competition, changes and developments in the United States health insurance system and laws, and our ability to adapt to them, the ability to maintain and enhance our name recognition, difficulties arising from acquisitions or other strategic transactions, and our ability to build the necessary infrastructure and processes to maintain effective controls over financial reporting. These and other risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in our forward-looking statements are discussed in HIIQ's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as well as other documents that may be filed by HIIQ from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which are available at www.sec.gov. Any forward-looking statement made by us in this press release is based only on information currently available to us and speaks only as of the date on which it is made. You should not rely on any forward-looking statement as representing our views in the future. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise.