Letter to the Editor: Short-term insurance plans have a place

Delaware’s decision to institute a three-month cap on short-term health insurance plans is a slap in the face to middle-class Americans struggling to afford healthcare. Elsewhere in the country, frugal consumers can utilize short-term insurance to fill their annual health coverage needs.

Short-term plans are significantly less expensive than traditional insurance. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Delaware residents who aren’t eligible for an insurance subsidy pay an average of $750 every month in premiums. Comparatively, short-term plans start at $75 a month. They’re less expensive because insurers aren’t required to cover expensive benefits like maternity or chronic disease care. As such, short-term insurance appeals to the growing pool of healthy uninsured Americans and consumers whose high ACA premiums and deductibles render them functionally uninsured.

Delaware is wrong to suggest short-term health plans are antagonists to a functioning health system. Federal Judge Richard Leon, skeptical of a legal challenge to short-term insurance, noted that these plans “fill in a gap, as opposed to forcing [consumers] to choose between no insurance and the ACA.”

These are real choices that today’s consumers must make. Yet because the state banned yearlong renewable plans — which are perfectly legal on a federal level Delaware’s residents have one less option on the table. We shouldn’t stand for this.

Will Coggin
Center for Consumer Freedom
Washington

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