So Indianapolis-based Golden Rule Insurance Co. has launched a plan aimed at people who move in and out of jobs that don't offer health insurance. The company is also marketing the plan to seniors who retire before they can receive Medicare coverage.
Golden Rule's Continuity policy allows customers to lock in individual coverage while they're healthy but not use it until they retire, become self-employed or unemployed, or move to a job without health care benefits.
Customers can add the Continuity feature to any Golden Rule plan, including traditional health insurance, health savings accounts and high-deductible plans. Continuity can be activated or deactivated without customers' facing higher rates even if they develop medical complications after buying the policy.
"We think there's a large market for this," said Ellen Laden, spokeswoman for Golden Rule, which is owned by Minnesota-based UnitedHealth Group. "The major interest in this is, you're only underwritten one time, at point of application."
Laden said Golden Rule has received 20 applications since the launch Dec. 2.
Golden Rule markets the policy in 25 states, including Indiana, and plans to expand to all of its state markets. Golden Rule and UnitedHealth have applied for a patent on Continuity.