(No) Individual Health Insurance in the VI
This topic has been discussed before, but things have changed in the last year. I want to buy individual health insurance coverage for myself. I am hitting a brick wall! I live in the VI and I am not insured, nor do I work for a company with benefits. I have had suggestions of companies that will write me, but not so. NOBODY will do it! (I'm healthy, so it's not a pre-existing, just a no VI policy.)
To my best knowledge, I can:
MOVE to the states.
Lie...and get ex-pat coverage.
Lie...and get coverage stateside and hope it never catches up with me.
Get a job with a company with benefits.
None of the above are resonably acceptable. I would take a job, but my schedule doesn't allow it right now.
The most reasonable option (for me) is to have an address in the states, where I (actually) live at least half the year, change my voter registration, drivers license, etc. A little extreme, considering I LIVE HERE!
I would love to hear from people in similar situations and welcone any advice for people, such as myself, living in the VI.
Thanks for the suggestions. The answer is still NO. I had already tried the others, but I called Tunick this morning, and they told me the same thing. Nobody is writing it in the VI.
So, a word to the wise, if you are planning to move to the VI and get individual health insurance coverage, don't plan on it.
The companies I have talked to have all said the hold on individual policies is due to health care reform. One person told me they aren't sure how to comply, so they just aren't writing it until they figure it out.
Bupa is not writing any indiv policies now because of the health care reform bill. they are taking names and numbers so when they do they can contact you. they have to revise their plans to fit the bill.
you can contact Lionel Downer at Marshall & Sterling for any info. and get your name on the contact list.
I just phoned United Healthcare / Golden Rule/ affiliates and they do not offer healthcare insurance to the US Virgin Islands (to echo Juanita's research results.) Their representative said to contact a local insurance agent for questions regarding the islands.
Just a note: United Heathcare is absolutely unaffordable anyway.
So if there is no available affordable insurance how does anyone go to Doctors or god for bid need emergency services? Do the walk ins or hospital do a sliding scale or payment plans. Man that is really sad that it is happening and some people who need a Dr most likely wont go due to lack of insurance. If and when we move to the VI we will have lost our insurance so this is good to now.
One of the best documentaries I personally have ever seen is Michael Moore's "Sicko." He addresses and exposes the U.S. Healthcare System for what it is. This country stands alone, as compared to other countries such as Germany, United Kingdom, Canada, Sweden, France, Cuba and the hundreds of other countries when it involves providing healthcare for the citizens. If anyone has not seen this, I encourage them to take a look. It is quite an eye-opener.
One of the health insurance, on line, brochures I viewed even made note that the US is special in their health care charges and not to expect the same cross-country reciprocity you would get from other countries.....be prepared for more expense, which was the reason for the insurance they were selling in the first place.
Call Donna Christen's office and voice your concerns and complaints regarding your inability to obtain health insurance due to the National reform.
I'm not sure that's the message I want to convey. I am in favor of health care reform. The problem, as I understand it from the insurance reps I have spoken with, is not that there is reform, but they don't know YET how to comply with it.
You know what I would love...an impartial, non-partisan, panel of "experts" in insurance and legalese to take the health care bill and put it in plain English. And sitting on the side, ready to clarify any mis-understandings, the people who actually wrote the bill (including Obama) to give their meaning of what they meant by what they wrote, not just someone's interpretation. It could be a mini-series.
As a fyi just announced:
"Marshall & Sterling Insurance, headquartered in Poughkeepsie, announced Monday plans to acquire First Insurance Agency Inc. in the U.S. Virgin Islands. A tentative date for the acquisition has been set for March 1.
Marshall & Sterling will merge all Virgin Island-based First Insurance Agency employees, along with all active insurance clients currently with First Insurance, into Marshall & Sterling’s branch operations on St. Thomas, St. Croix and St. John, according to a news release.
“This acquisition represents an excellent growth opportunity for our company,” said Timothy Dean, president of Marshall & Sterling Insurance, in a prepared statement.
Marshall & Sterling Insurance Inc. was founded in 1864.
It is an employee-owned company with more than 350 insurance specialists in 18 branch offices in New York and the U.S. Virgin Islands."
Thanks Tippi. Me too!!! LOL
I acutally, informally, applied for a job yesterday, but they don't offer health insurance, so back to the drawing board. One of the reps I spoke with did say she didn't think it would be too much longer before they could start writing individual policies again. Hope she's right.
When the baby boomers hit 65 they are covered under Medicare. You can buy a medi- gap policy to cover the difference from ARRP. Medicare covers the cost of Doctors and Hospitals. When you're covered by medicare most Hospital insurance plans become secondary payers or flat out cancel you.:D