Since we are moving to St. Thomas in a couple of weeks, I'd like to get some information about health insurance on St. Thomas. What companies offer this on STT? I've looked on the internet, but I couldn't find any companies that offered health insurance on St. Thomas, only on US mainland...
Thanks in advance for any information!
Since you are not a U.S citizen then Ex Patriot coverage may provide the coverage you need, most of it is sold directly on the internet. Ex Patriot coverage is designed for people living outside their country of origin, so it usually does not work for U.S. residents moving to the U.S. Virgin Islands. If you have a question on a specific insurance carrier or to see if it is licensed in the U.S.V.I., please call the VI Dept. of Banking & Insurance at (340) 774-7166.
There are a limited number of insurance carriers offering individual and group health coverage in the islands, but we do have a quite a few good insurance agencies. You can feel free to contact us or any of the others and I'm sure you will be well taken care of.
Welcome to the islands, Carl
I just researched this extensively.
There are only two companies that sell plans that are not ex-pat insurance: Amedex and another company whose name is escaping my addled brain right now, plus AARP offers it's own group insurance. The only other options besides expat insurance (which seems to have a lot of limitations, exclusions, etc.) are Medicaid for low-income folks and Medicare for seniors and the permanently disabled. (There is a two year waiting period for Medicare coverage after the Social Security administration declares you totally and permanently disabled. (Folks who are blind or have ALS are exempt from the waiting period.)
Both private companies use underwriting to determine if you will be accepted for coverage or not, and if you are covered, they can set your deductible as high as $30k per year should you have medical conditions like high blood pressure/cholesterol, heart problems, diabetes, etc. A history of cancer or any more serious current or past conditions may likely result in being denied coverage. Our STX agent, Terry of American Medical Plans of the VI, arranged for us to do a phone interview with each company that took about 15 minutes to see if we were even eligible for coverage before we paid the application fees (which are not refunded if you are turned down). If two people apply for Amedex coverage at the same time, the agent you use may be able to get a small prescription drug benefit added to the policy, but this coverage requires a 90 day waiting period, a $100 deductible, and the RX benefits are capped at $2k annually.
Neither company is required to comply with aspects of federal COBRA or HIPAA laws that were designed to make it easier for people leaving group coverage to purchase an individual policy.
We went with Amedex, which offers plans that cover local medical care only (within the USVI, Puerto Rico, etc.), local and US coverage and worldwide coverage. The actual premiums were very reasonable: the local and US plan runs about $140 per month. As mentioned above, they kill you with the deductible if you have any risk factors in your health history.
The women at American Medical Plans of the USVI in St. Croix were caring and wonderful. and I can't recommend them enough. From Ann's post above, it appears that Terry and maybe others on their staff do business on both islands.
Best of luck -- it can be a challenging and frustrating quest if you are anything other than very healthy.
I will post the name of the other company as soon as it comes to me.