Virginia's generally strong health insurance statistics do little to help thousands of families who have either lost their employer-based health insurance, are struggling to find a way to pay their premiums, or both. Indeed, between huge layoffs, emerging economic realities that rely more on flexibility and independent contractors, and the ongoing effects of sweeping health care reform, more state residents are likely to seek out their own health insurance quote in the next year than ever before.
Virginia Health Insurance and Unemployment
In March of 2010, Virginia's unemployment rate was 7.4 percent, high, but nearly as high as the national jobless rate of 9.7 percent. This still translates into thousands of people who no longer have employer-sponsored health insurance. Worse, long-term unemployment is also on the rise, threatening the 18-month COBRA extension. That said, COBRA health insurance may be prohibitively expensive for some, especially compared to low-cost, high-deductible plans that may meet the health care needs of reasonably young and healthy adults. Moreover, it remains to be seen to what extent the recent economic hardships have cut into the rate of employers offering health insurance to their employees. In 2008, the state enjoyed 59 percent of its employers offering coverage to their employees, including 99 percent of employers with 50 or more employees, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
To its credit, the state's Bureau of Insurance has published this consumer alert to help counsel the recently unemployed maintain some form of health coverage.
Virginia Health Insurance on the Individual Market
Virginia is one of the top states for several health care and health insurance indicators. Compared to the rest of the nation, the state has lower uninsured rates, fewer citizens that use Medicare and Medicaid funds, a higher overall health ranking --all while spending less on health care per capita than the national average. Yet, the one area where Virginia health insurance is in need of improvement is the individual market. Fewer residents find health insurance in Virginia on the individual market. This isn't surprising as the state offers few insurance guarantees on the individual market, has no high-risk pool, nor does it allow self-employed individuals to apply for small "group of one" health insurance plans. Fortunately, health care reform is about to help guarantee access to health insurance in Virginia, in spite of preexisting conditions, along with other benefits espoused in this governmental resource.
Find an Affordable Virginia Health Insurance Quote
Despite the obstacles, finding a Virginia health insurance quote is by no means impossible, on the large group, small group, or even on the individual market. One of the reasons Virginia has comparatively few guarantees and mandates for individual health insurance is the relatively high in-state competition for individual health plans. The state currently lists 22 insurance companies that offer health coverage on the individual market. Of course, this will do you little good unless you can find a way to use this competition to your benefit, and this is where an online referral service, like NetQuote, can really become a game-changer.
Simply take a minute to submit an online request for a Virginia health insurance quote, and we'll match you to licensed insurance companies that best fit your insurance needs. Better yet, these companies will know they're up against the other insurers in our database, ensuring fast quotes at competitive rates. Plus, by using our service, you can reserve more time to discuss the details of particular policies with the health insurers' customer sales rep. There's no reason to feel intimidated, however. Not only will you have ample opportunity to learn more about various health plans, but you can review this information and choose your insurer from the comfort of your own home.