My Quest to Find Affordable Health Insurance is Finished

finish line I recently got approved for a health insurance policy that I can afford. It has been a long, tiring, frustrating, quest to find coverage after I lost my job that came with employer sponsored health insurance. Here is a quick summary of my journey from uninsured to insured.

This all started in 2009. I was working as a paraeducator in a special needs classroom. After working for the school for the required amount of time, I became eligible for their employer sponsored health insurance. I think it was Anthem Blue Cross.

It covered both me and my husband. My husband is legally blind, so he was already getting Medicare Part A. He did not need to sign up for Medicare Part B because the health insurance I got from my job covered him for the same things that Part B would have. When I lost my job, I lost our health insurance coverage.

The first thing I did was look into COBRA. Unfortunately, COBRA was too expensive for me to be able to afford. It was in the process of trying to get approved for unemployment insurance benefits, and our money was running out.

I went completely without health insurance coverage from when I got laid off in 2009 through November of 2011. At that time, I was receiving unemployment benefits, and I had found some steady work. We had enough money to try and see if we could find health insurance.

My husband’s employer offered health insurance that would have covered both of us. However, the cost was a bit more than we could afford. It would have required him to pick up extra hours every week, and there was no guarantee that he would get them. He gets disability benefits and has to stay under a certain number of hours. This was not a solution.

My husband and I applied for one of the least expensive plans from Anthem Blue Cross. We got approved, but, there were problems. The insurer approved me for the plan we requested, but charged my husband for a higher priced plan. This made the policy unaffordable. Further investigation made it clear that this plan covered almost nothing. We canceled it.

Sometime later, my husband applied for Medicare Part B. At this moment, he has turned in the paperwork and is waiting for coverage to begin. I applied for a health insurance policy for myself from Celtic Insurance. I was denied when I applied by phone, because the insurer considered my allergies to be a pre-existing condition.

To get proof of this, they said I had to apply through the website, which I did. I was told I would not be approved, but somehow, they approved me. The information I got from HealthCare.gov said the premium would cost around $200. Instead, the insurer wanted $330. This was too expensive for me to afford, and I had to cancel.

Finally, I decided to get an insurance broker who gave me quotes for some very affordable plans, and assisted me with applying for one from Anthem Blue Cross. In April of 2012, I got approved, and the cost of the premium is exactly what I was quoted. I can afford it! It appears that I have completed my quest to find affordable health insurance.

Image by jayneandd on Flickr

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About Jen Thorpe

I have a B.S. in Education and am a former teacher and day care worker. I started working as a freelance writer in 2010 and have written for many topics here at Families.com.

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