“Strongest” and “weakest” is relative because it depends what you are looking for. If you consider a “strong” plan one that will cover you long-term overseas as well as in the USA, one that has co-pays, one that is direct pay (no cash involved), one that has no maternity waiting period, good wellness check-ups, a worldwide PPO, that kind of plan is now available. Obviously, the plan will be more expensive than regular international plans, but not more expensive than some standard USA plans. A couple in their mid-twenties on this plan with a $1000 deductible outside the USA would have a monthly premium of $266.
A so-called “weak” plan might be one that capped coverage for a CAT Scan or MRI at $600, provided up to $600 a day for hospital room and board, provided limited maternity coverage even with a 12-month waiting period, and did not provide permanent coverage in the USA beyond the allotted furlough time. A plan like this for a couple in their mid-twenties with a $1000 deductible would have a premium of $138 per month.
Many international workers opt for “middle-of-the-road” plans. They don?t like to pay $266 a month, but they also don?t like having “capped” coverage for MRIs, etc. Such plans require a 12-month waiting period for maternity, allow furlough coverage in the USA, provide some wellness check-ups, etc. These plans may put ?riders? on pre-existing conditions. A plan like this with a $1000 deductible for a couple in their mid-twenties will have a monthly premium of around $245.
The rates on most of the “weak” and “middle-of-the-road” plans can be lowered by five percent to ten percent by paying annually instead of monthly.
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