Saturday, March 8, 2014

Smart Short Term Medical Insurance update at

I'm working on an update of Smart Short Term Medical Insurance online. I expect this will be the most popular product in its class for most of the U.S. going forward for the users of

Smart Short Term Medical is designed to be an affordable way to protect you and your family from the high cost of unexpected illnesses and accidents.

  • Temporary Medical Insurance - up to 6 months
  • For those in between jobs as an alternative to COBRA
  • For those waiting for underwriting approval of another plan

Friday, January 7, 2011

Less expensive short term medical insurance

We believe that many consumers are still unfamiliar with a new type of short term health insurance that is priced significantly less than other national brands. The new product is called "Secure Lite STM", calling attention to its unique cost-saving features. Premiums are about 1/3 of regular major medical insurance and about 25% less than other short term medical insurance. Coverage is issued by Standard Security Life Insurance Company of New York. Applications are made online for immediate processing and evidence of insurance can be printed immediately.

Cost savings are achieved by using higher comprehensive policy deductibles and placing limits on maximum benefits of $750,000. The new policy has a maximum coverage period of six months but allows consecutive policies for periods of coverage.

For information is available at

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Growing need for short term medical insurance in Washington state

Washington state residents faced a higher than usual risk of employement layoffs over this past year and this trend will continue into 2011, particularly among its younger workers. Exel already announced 146 permanent layoffs in Auburn for next month (January 2011) and International Paper will lay off another 78 in Bellevue.
Layoffs at commercial employers follow layoffs and other work reductions for state government employees. In April 2010 the state Legislature passed and Gov. Chris Gregoire signed into law Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 6503 that was designed to reduce state government spending for employees, the law requires that state agencies close on the 10 days specified in the bill or submit an alternate compensation reduction plan for approval by the Office of Financial Management.
Last week Governor Chris Gregoire proposed deep budget cuts, including the elimination of the state's health insurance program for the poor in response to the state’s budget crisis. Marty Brown, director of the Office of Financial Management, says the state needs to cut $901 million in spending. Legislators likely will face a special session to deal with the state’s budget gap prior to the regular session in January.
These are typically candidates for low cost short term medical insurance during their position of transition as a more cost-effective alternative to COBRA. While most U.S. residents have a choice of several short term medical insurance plans, Washington residents have only one. Markel Insurance Company apparently is apparently the only commercial insurance provider who has applied and received consent from the state insurance department to offer these policies. Freedom Benefits Insurance Exchange recently reviewed this coverage. We have no concerns about this single payor system, since Markel has a longstanding reputation as a stable and reliable provider of specialty insurance.
Short term medical insurance can be issued immediately with an online application and coverage can extend to as long as 12 months.  While short term medical insurance is typically hassle-free, it does not cover the cost of treating pre-existing medical conditions and so is not appropriate for a person who has large ongoing medical costs. COBRA and other continuation plans, although more expensive, are a better option for high medical risk individuals.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Ford workers consider short term medical insurance

Ford Motor Company announced that it will offer short term medical insurance as part of a buyout retirement offer for almost all of its 41,000 hourly workers. The offer is intended to reduce the firm's factory work force. The New York Times reports that in the past Ford kept laid-off workers in a job bank rather than remove them from the payroll. This year, however, Ford is actively reducing its work force in anticipation of lower demand for cars in the future.

The short term medical insurance plan is a six month basic health insurance policy but the details of the coverage are not provided. Ford has not announced how many workers are expected to elect the buyout offer.

Considering the larger regional trend of employers hiring temporary workers and the shift toward individual health insurance (as opposed to employer-sponsored group insurance), some of these workers in the Detroit area are likely to consider alternate affordable health insurance options for the long term before deciding whether to accept the buyout package. Those who do not qualify for lower cost options could face higher health insurance costs through their state's high risk Blue Cross insurance pool.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

HCC announces affiliation with Travel Insured International

In a press release dated 10/30/09, HCC Medical Insurance Services, LLC announced its new alliance with Travel Insured International. HCC Medical Insurance Services LLC is a leader in online health insurance products for international travelers and expatriates. Travel Insured International is a provider of travel insurance services such as trip cancellation, trip interruption and travel assistance services.

HCC Medical Insurance Services President Mark Carney is quoted  saying “We are very excited to announce our affiliation with Travel Insured International. In spite of the economic downturn, the international traveler and expatriate’s need for health insurance products continue to grow”.
Travel Insured International’s product portfolio will now include eight additional health insurance products that are already also available online at Freedom Benefits:

Atlas Travel Series – a short-term health policy for individuals traveling outside their home country

CitizenSecure(SM) – annually renewable major medical insurance with a term-life insurance option for individuals and families

StudentSecure(SM) – health coverage for international students and scholars studying abroad

IC+ International Term Life – term life insurance policy for individuals living outside the U.S. for up to 10 years

Other products offered by HCC Medical Insurance Services include: Atlas Group, Atlas Professional, CitizenSecureSM Economy, GroupSecureSM.

About Travel Insured International

Travel Insured International, based in East Hartford, CT, was founded in 1993 by the foresight of insurance industry executive Peter Gehris when he acquired the travel protection division of the Travelers Insurance Company. Travel Insured International delivers strong, affordable benefits in the customer’s choice of a broad range of travel plans, as well as group and customized protection programs. Travel Insured International has established and driven higher standards for policy quality and customer care.

About HCC Medical Insurance Services

The international products are administered by Indianapolis-based HCC Medical Insurance Services, LLC (HCCMIS), a recognized leader in international life and health insurance offering coverage to consumers in more than 130 countries. Through its staff and a worldwide network of distributors, HCCMIS provides quality and value to clients. The company is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to serve its clients worldwide. HCCMIS is a subsidiary of HCC Insurance Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: HCC), a leading international specialty insurance group headquartered in Houston, Texas. HCC has assets of $8.9 billion, shareholders’ equity of $2.8 billion and is rated AA (Very Strong) by Standard & Poor’s and AA (Very Strong) by Fitch Ratings. In addition, HCC’s major domestic insurance companies are rated A+ (Superior) by A.M. Best Company.

Monday, October 19, 2009

A closer look at Secure Short Term Medical Insurance

The brand name "Secure Short Term Medical" is one of the best-known and most highly regarded low cost health insurance plans in the U.S. The brand actually consists of four products that each target a specific group of consumers. The four products are: 1) Secure STM, 2) Secure Lite STM, 3) Secure 12x3 STM and 4) Secure Saver STM.

What makes this product lineup work so well? Probably not any one thing in particular but rather a combination of factors. We could make an analogy to an "all star lineup" in a sports team. First, the plan is administered by Health Plan Administrators, Inc., arguably one of the best service organizations in health care today. Second, The Standard Security Life Insurance Company of New York enjoys a strong reputation among insurance professionals and consumers.

Next is the length of coverage. This is the only insurance product that can adequately span a gap from just one month to 36 months of continuous coverage. With a growing number of consumers looking forward to post-reform insurance within a few years, the Secure 12x3 offers the flexible length of coverage they need del with the uncertainty of the health care reform timetable.

Eligibility for the four insurance plans is liberal so most applicants will qualify for coverage. In fact, in many cases this is one of the few options available to applicants who have been previously declined for health insurance with another company. The exceptions are listed in the "medical eligibility" section of the online product descriptions. It is important to realize that all short term medical insurance plans exclude coverage for pre-existing medical conditions. This is what makes them so affordable and easy to access.

Only one of the four products screens for weight or previous declines in determining eligibility. That is the Secure Saver, as we might expect, since it it the lowest cost plan with the least predictable out-of-pocket expenses.

Finally, we cannot ignore price. Despite all the talk about the quality of insurance the fact is that many consumers buy based primarily on price. The Secure Lite and Secure Saver rank among the least expensive major medical insurance choices in many parts of the country.

A comparison of the four Secure STM products is published at and a description of coverage and exclusions is available for each product. Although all of these policies come with a standard "10 day free look", generic sample policy certificates are also available online for all four products for those who want to take a closer look at these insurance options.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Celtic Insurance gains customers with low prices

Pricing of short term medical insurance tends to be more stable than managed care plans or other types of health insurance. As a result, pricing trends tend to develop more slowly and it may take longer for advisers and consumers to identify those companies with cost advantages. One such example is Celtic Insurance that has slowly and quietly winning over customers with its low rates and strong customer service. The coverage is priced and issued completely online at the company's secure enrollment site managed by ehealthinsurance.