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Catastrophic Health Insurance

Catastrophic health plans, also known as major medical coverage, is an option for those who don't have access to employer-sponsored health plans or just don't want to pay for extra coverage they don't need. With catastrophic health insurance, you are covered in case of a major medical emergency.

The Way Catastrophic Health Plans Work

When enrolled in this type of policy, you are given a high annual deductible and low monthly premiums. These plans are also known as High Deductible Health Plans. There are also co-payments you are required to pay for doctor visits and prescription drugs. Once your annual deductible is met, you will be covered for major medical expenses only.

With most of these plans, the deductible begins at $500 and could go up to as high as $5,000. The higher the deductible you pay, the lower your premium rates. You may come across a policy that has a cap on it; it could be between $1 million and $3 million. Whenever the amount on the cap is reached, your policy will become void and you will no longer have coverage for your medical expenses.

Note that some of these catastrophic insurance plans won't cover pregnancy or maternity care until 12 months after your policy becomes effective.

Majority of the people who purchase this plan are in their 20s or are between 50 and 65 years old. The younger individuals buying catastrophic insurance usually don't have employer-sponsored health benefits or are self-employed. The elders tend to opt for this insurance because they are healthy, on few or no prescriptions and fear of having financial loss due to a heart attack or other serious illness. They'd rather pay lower premiums and out-of-pocket costs for doctor visits.

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