This takes away a coverage opportunity for children who have limited other options available.
A special Florida health insurance plan called Stars Plus has been providing kids with few coverage options with financial support for their medical needs. Now, that health plan is being cancelled, reducing options for these families even further.
The health plan will no longer be available as of the end of this year as it will not renew into 2017.
At the moment, this special Florida health insurance plan provides coverage to 9,620 kids throughout the state. Some of those children have special needs and their families rely on the coverage for their regular therapies and treatments. According to Florida Healthy Kids, the health plan was simply too expensive to continue offering to residents of the state.
Parents whose children are losing the coverage have been left scrambling to find another comparable option. When their kids have special needs, they have to be certain that the health plans they choose will allow them to afford the care those kids require.
Unfortunately, the other Florida health insurance options for these kids are few and far between.
Florida Healthy Kids is a public-private organization. It sells health plans for kids aged 5 through 18 years old. It is specific to children whose families earn too much for Medicaid eligibility.
This year, the Florida Healthy Kids program covered a total of 167,500 children throughout the state. The majority of the families who purchased coverage through the organization made too much for Medicaid but were still earning under $48,600. This made them eligible for subsidies from the government. Depending on their income, their monthly premiums were typically either $15 or $20.
Families with larger incomes also had the opportunity to pay full premiums for broader coverage. This year, there were approximately 1,700 kids enrolled in the full-premium payment plan called Sunshine Health Stars. This was a monthly $205 for the plan or $220 for the plan including dental coverage.
The Sunshine Health Stars Plus plan provided Florida health insurance coverage for another 9,620 kids. This was a plan with thorough coverage, a $10 co-pay for emergency room services, $0 deductible and a $5 co-pay on any therapy services. For this plan, parents paid $284 per month or $299 with dental. For families whose children need regular, costly therapies, treatment and other forms of medical care, this expensive coverage was essentially a necessity. They must now try to find a new comparable plan for 2017.