I haven’t seen the latest numbers but previously there were over 1,000,000 New Jersey residents without health insurance coverage. While health insurance in New Jersey certainly isn’t cheap, there are many options for people to obtain quality insurance if they are willing to look and explore all their options. Some plans can be free or very inexpensive depending on your income level.
Before I provide the list, there are few things to keep in mind:
- All New Jersey coverage is guaranteed issue. – there may or not be a pre-existing conditions clause though. There is a possibility that a carrier will not pay claims for any pre-existing condition for up to the first year. Please refer to your specific program for details.
- Smokers and non-smokers pay the same rates.
- New Jersey plans can only base your price on your age, your sex and your location. North Jersey will pay higher rates than Southern. Men pay less than women and older individuals will pay more than younger folks.
That being said, here is the list.
Top Eight Resources for Uninsured New Jersey Residents to Get Health Insurance
- Employer based coverage- If you are working at least 25 hours at your current job, ask HR or your boss if coverage is available. Employers must pay 10% of the premium at a minimum so these prices may be less than other plans.
- COBRA and New Jersey Continuation – if you had previous employer based coverage through a small or large business, you may still be eligible to enroll in New Jersey Continuation coverage or COBRA.
- Dependent to 31 Coverage– http://www.state.nj.us/dobi/division_consumers/du31.html -DU31, P.L. 2005, c. 375, permits young adults to continue coverage or become covered under a parent’s group health plan as an over-age dependent until the young adult’s 31st birthday.A young adult may use the DU31 election right to:continue coverage under a parent’s group health benefits plan, when the young adult is “aging-out” of that parent’s coverage; orbecome covered under a parent’s group health benefits plan, so long as the young adult has had coverage at some time in the past.
- New Jersey Family Care http://www.njfamilycare.org/ – NJ FamilyCare is a federal and state funded health insurance program created to help New Jersey’s uninsured children and certain low-income parents and guardians to have affordable health coverage. It is not a welfare program. NJ FamilyCare is for families who do not have available or affordable employer insurance, and cannot afford to pay the high cost of private health insurance.
- Medicaid http://www.state.nj.us/humanservices/dmahs/clients/medicaid/ Medicaid provides health insurance to parents/caretakers and dependant children, pregnant women, and people who are aged, blind or disabled. These programs pay for hospital services, doctor visits, prescriptions, nursing home care and other healthcare needs, depending on what program a person is eligible for.
- New Jersey Individual Health Insurance Program http://www.state.nj.us/dobi/division_insurance/ihcseh/ihcmain.htm The Individual Health coverage program was created to ensure that people without access to employer or government sponsored health care programs could purchase health coverage for themselves and their families from a variety of private carriers. Individuals, regardless of their age or health status, are guaranteed renewable coverage under standard individual health benefits plans designed by the individual health coverage program board as well as under the “Basic and Essential” plans (B&E) sold by carriers.
- New Jersey Protect/NJ Protect – http://www.state.nj.us/dobi/division_insurance/njprotect/index.htmNJ Protect is a new health insurance option for uninsured New Jerseyans with pre-existing medical conditions. Coverage through NJ Protect will generally cost less than comparable individual health insurance and offer superior benefits. Because the program is federally subsidized, treatment for pre-existing medical conditions will be covered as of the day a policy goes into effect, and preventive care will be covered at no out-of-pocket cost to the policyholders. NJ protect can be purchased through Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield NJ or Amerihealth.
- NJ Health Link – Services for uninsured or under-insured people. This site has an expansive list of other state/government subsidized programs and other options for obtaining health insurance or health care.
Final notes: Many of these programs are handled directly through the state or insurance carrier. If you need assistance with options 1, 2, 3 or 6 I can help you directly. Please contact me for any details or if you have other resources you think may be a good addition.
If you would like a quote on individual coverage, please contact me here.