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Obamacare and Visitors Insurance: Issues and Concerns

Visitors insurance offers a number of benefits for people coming to the United States who are not eligible to buy insurance in the Health Insurance Marketplace. Cover is included for simple illnesses like the flu or an ear infection, to serious life-threatening conditions such as heart attack. You also get cover for prescription drugs, doctor’s visits, and often repatriation and emergency evacuation. Coverage is for visitors from outside the country to all states in America.

You may not be able to buy a subsidized health insurance plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace but by shopping around you can, as a visitor to the United States, find affordable short-term health coverage. It is important to compare benefits under different health insurance plans because some will be more expensive with the initiation of Obamacare, while others will offer increased benefits and cost savings.


Do Doctors Accept Visitors Insurance Plans Under Obamacare?

What happens if you are traveling to the US and you get into an accident. You have a visitors insurance policy but how can you be sure it will be accepted by doctors and hospitals now working under the Obamacare legislation? Do you need to purchase an Obama-approved visitors insurance plan? All plans are different although most will apply to the Affordable Care Act in the same way. Visitors insurance plans may provide benefits that match the levels expected of Obamacare policies, but they are exempt from the Affordable Care Act conditions by being limited duration policies designed for international travel or temporary living. Consequently, the doctors and hospitals you visit in the US will work with your visitors insurance in the same way as in pre-Obamacare days. A doctor will treat you under your insurance and will then bill you or bill the insurance company direct, depending on the arrangement they have with the insurer. Bear in mind that is it useful to buy visitors insurance from a US insurer. When you buy from an American company the hospital will generally bill the insurance company direct, meaning you don’t need to pay anything out of your own pocket. The process can be more complicated when working with international health insurers – in most cases you will need to pay for your treatment and then make a claim with the insurer to get the money back. For convenience and peace of mind, a US-underwritten plan makes life easier for you.

Obamacare Problems?

Not everyone is a fan of Obamacare. The Affordable Care Act has been the subject of intense debate ever since it was first instigated, and will continue to inspire columnists and commentators to voice their opinions on Obama’s healthcare policy for many months to come. Critics point to the fact that in order to insure the millions of Americans that are currently uninsured, the premiums of many people will have to go up. However, Obamacare’s Health Insurance Marketplace is designed to get around this problem by providing the opportunity for low-earners to access subsidized plans. High earners will be taxed more in order to meet shortfalls. Some employers, it is claimed, have cut workers’ hours in order to make sure they don’t have to comply with the Obamacare legislation. Other critics claim the Act concentrates more on getting everyone covered than it does on addressing the high cost of US health care in the first place. Obamacare stands to make a big difference to how the healthcare system operates in the United States. It remains to be seen whether all the changes will be beneficial for citizens and residents. However, one thing is for sure – if you are not a US citizen or are in the country for a short period of time, you must continue to purchase a travel insurance or visitor insurance plan before every visit, in order to safeguard against the high cost of healthcare in the country.