Specialty Health Insurance Policies

What are other sources of income to cover my medical expenses?

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This insurance takes care of the medical needs and physical rehabilitation of the insured following injury while on duty and may mitigate the sufferings that arise from lost wages because of inability to work. The benefits that accrue from this kind of care may vary depending on the laws of different states.

Specialty Health Insurance Policies

The needs of the health insured are different and certain people require special or extra care. These policies are designed to meet the specific demands of the insured. These special policies are generally expensive and hence it is better to consult your health insurance agent before purchasing one so that it meets your specific situations and also avoid paying unnecessarily extra premium. These kinds of policies are given below.

Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA)

The specialty of this policy is that it allows you to enjoy health care in your employer's group health plan even after you retire, quit, laid off or if you are forced to work on reduced hours. You have the option to continue in your employer's group health plan for a limited time and still pay the full premium (which most of the time includes the share of your employer paid on your behalf). Depending on the situation, the coverage may vary between 18 and 36 months and if you wish to enjoy the COBRA benefits, you are supposed to fill up the required forms supplied by your employer's health benefit department within 60 days of leaving your job or else, you are likely to lose all the benefits provided under the coverage.

The COBRA coverage is expensive since you are required to pay the full premium but it would be worth considering if you have medical disability that would make it difficult to get health insurance coverage elsewhere.

Life Insurance Riders

These are purchased as separate plans with a set of premium and they are attached to your primary life insurance coverage with the idea of providing additional health benefits. While applying, you will get the rider explanation form that gives information about qualifying conditions. These riders are intended to give additional benefits in the form of waiver of premium, guaranteed insurability, disability, long term care, cost of living and accelerated death benefits.

Critical Illness Policy

This kind of special care policy will pay you a lump sum amount or will give you money in the event you are diagnosed with certain specified conditions like cancer, renal failure, heart attack or say Alzheimer's disease. This policy was once popularly known as “cancer insurance policy” and it is an indemnity type of insurance that pays you a predetermined sum of money even if you subsequently recover to your original health status. But they come with certain restrictions such as

  • a compulsory waiting period after diagnosis to get payment
  • certain criteria to be met before payment is released
  • there is a compulsion that the riders must be purchased
  • impose certain restrictions on the pre-existing medical conditions

Medical Insurance Policy for College Students

These policies are available through respective colleges or universities where the student studies. Certain health insurance companies sell tailor made policies to those students who consider

  • the college sponsored plan inadequate to meet their needs
  • or if they are no longer eligible for medical coverage under their parent's plan
  • or if they attend school outside the HMO or PPO region of their parent's plan

The policies differ depending on the State in which you live but in general they cover students of all age group, offer special deductibles, specialized physician and associated medical care facilities, provision of year round medical coverage that stays with the student even if the student changes school / college / university. In other words, this policy is student specific and not institution oriented.


The original Medicare policy had a lot of gaps and to plug these loopholes, different private insurance players launched this plan. The eligibility to qualify for Medigap is that you should qualify for Medicare. The Medigap plan compensates for some of the cost associated with health care that the original Medicare doesn't provide.

If you have both the original Medicare Plan and obtained a Medigap policy, then both of them will pay their respective share covered under health care costs. There are 12 different standardized Medigap policies available starting from Medigap Plan A to L. Participants under both policies (Medicare and medigap) have to pay for the monthly Medicare Part B premium as well as a premium to the Medigap insurance company.

Each person has to buy a separate policy since there is no group cover option available in this plan and if you are married, you and your spouse must each buy separate Medigap policies. Sift through the different Medigap policies provided by different players and select the one that most suits your need, since costs involved vary widely from one plan to another and between companies.