Supplemental coverage is additional insurance available to add benefits to your medical plan that are not usually covered. By covering out-of-pocket costs and services that your policy does not, having an extra cushion for care you feel is necessary can be very helpful. Most private health insurance carriers offer supplemental insurance along with their other medical products. Coverage varies based on the company and sometimes the state, though most insurers offer one or more of the following add-on benefits:
- Term Life
- Critical Illness
- Mental Disorders/Substance Abuse
These benefits are not substitutes for a health insurance policy, nor are they available as stand-alone benefits, hence being a supplement to your existing coverage. Pharmacy discount cards can also be considered an additional benefit. When you fill out a quote with East Coast Health Insurance, additional benefits will be displayed, if available, when you click on a plan.
Supplemental insurance is simply there to cover services your plan does not already. Certain individuals will need to apply for a supplemental benefit, such as those with a serious illness who are accepted for health insurance being highly encouraged to apply for critical illness insurance. Those who take part in risky activities may be pointed towards accident coverage.
Common Types of Additional Coverage
Many health insurance companies offer dental plans that are similar in design to their regular PPO health policies. For example, UnitedHealthOne offers Dental Value and Dental Premier options with coverage for in-network and out-of-network dentists. Similar to health plans, these dental plans cover preventive care at no cost with in-network providers and no waiting period. The Dental Premier plan offers 80 percent coverage on basic services and 50 percent on major services after deductible, and one routine X-ray per calendar year for a $50 annual deductible.
Depending on the state in which you live and your age, your monthly rate for dental coverage can start around $15 or $20 per month. UnitedHealthOne has a waiting period for all basic and major services, so another company that gives you instant access to care would be preferable. HumanaOne is another national carrier who offers their own dental benefit.
Vision coverage helps cover the cost of eye exams, contact lenses, and prescription frames and lenses. HumanaOne’s Vision Care plan offers eye exams for a $10 copay, and prescription lenses for a $25 copay. Out-of-network care is covered with these supplemental plans. There are also discounted rates available for a second pair of eyeglasses, anti-reflective and scratch resistant coatings, and Lasik procedures at contracted facilities. As one would expect, an additional monthly premium is applicable to these plans.
Also known as disease-specific insurance, critical illness policies help provide assistance to individuals who need to treat serious conditions. Such plans may offer a cash benefit to help pay for additional costs related to the illness, but not covered by your regular health plan or disability coverage.
Coverage can be used for a variety of payments and services, based on your plan. Assistance can be applied towards deductibles, travel and lodging when treatment is away from home, experimental treatment – typically for cancer therapy, child care, household help, and living expenses.
Accident insurance offers coverage for health care services needed in case of an accidental injury. If injured on an accident policy, you can receive cash assistance to help pay for medical services or any other use. Accident insurance can cover emergency room care, accidental death and dismemberment, hospital services for accidental injuries, and disability benefits resulting from a qualified accident.
The cash received can help immensely with bills that accumulate after an accident. It can be used for physical therapy, rental or car payments, or other treatment that is not covered by medical insurance. Certain accident policies also cover a hotel stay if their treatment is only available at a facility or hospital far from their usual residence.
Accident policies do not impose a waiting period, therefore being effective as soon as they begin. By paying the plan member directly, this type of coverage allows the individual to decide how they want to spend their benefits.
Many health insurance plans still do not cover all services associated with pregnancy. Of course, it is essential to make prenatal and postnatal doctor’s office visits, and the cost of labor and delivery can get very expensive, even with coverage. Supplemental pregnancy insurance helps cover all medical services necessary through the process of having a child.
Lab work, copays, deductibles, and hospital fees can all potentially be covered by an add-on maternity plan. Coverage will also likely be available for complications of pregnancy, such as early delivery, accidents, and illnesses. Typically, you will be paid the amount of lost income during your maternity leave by your supplemental pregnancy insurance. It may extend past the length of your leave if there were complications.
These plans are only available to women who apply before they become pregnant. Some companies have a waiting period before you benefits are available, which is important to keep in mind so your investment in an additional policy does not go to waste.