If you're currently unemployed and without health insurance or you have a job that does not provide you with health insurance coverage, you may need to consider getting yourself a catastrophic health insurance coverage plan. Catastrophic health insurance is setup to cover major health problems and normally has high deductibles and low monthly premiums.
With a catastrophic coverage health plan, you will normally have to pay out of pocket for doctor office visits and prescription drugs, but major expenses are covered. These types of expenses may include hospital stays, surgery, intensive care, lab tests and X-Rays. You will rarely find pregnancy and maternity care covered on these types of plans.
Catastrophic coverage may be purchased individually or as group plans. You will have to pass pre-existing medical condition screenings. This means coverage for conditions you had prior to getting coverage wouldn't be covered. A few examples might include diabetes, emphysema, heart disease and cancer (but there are countless more possibilities).
Normally, catastrophic medical insurance coverage is purchased by healthier people in their 20's and sometimes for people nearing the retirement age (50-65 years of age). It is also a popular alternative for self-employed individuals who don't have a health insurance plan.
Should you get a catastrophic health insurance plan? That depends. If you are healthy with no pre-existing conditions and you do not have access to another health plan, you may be a good candidate for a catastrophic coverage plan. Also, if you are an older adult with no health problems and you just need piece of mind insurance coverage to protect your for major catastrophes (like heart attacks, cancer, etc.), then this type of coverage could be right for you. If you don't fit these criteria, you might consider other options.
What should you look for in a catastrophic coverage plan? Consider the following when comparing catastrophic policies from different insurance providers:
- The cost of the premiums
- The cost of the deductibles and your maximum out of pocket expense
- The level of coverage
- Whether or not you can afford to pay for prescriptions and office co-payments
- Do you have pre-existing conditions?
- Do you get sick often?