My sister worked at bank and had to retire 10 months ago due to testing positive for dementia. She signed up for short term insurance and not Cobra. In the past she has had both knees replaced and recently slipped and fell and broke both legs. Short term insurance runs out in April and insurance company says they will not renew.She will turn 65 in a couple of months. What options is there to get health insurance coverage.

  • Can we assume the United Sates based on the mention of COBRA? Commented Mar 7, 2020 at 22:14

1 Answer 1


Depending on her state of residence (assuming US) she may have many options. As a worst case option, her loss of insurance would be a qualifying event allowing a special enrollment period into an "Obamacare" plan via her state's insurance exchange. But she may have better options, as there are state-run programs for people like her in many states. She should contact a Navigator (or her state's equivalent) and ask what her options are.

Also, although you stated she lost her job 10 months ago and already turned down COBRA, she should clarify with her employer what their election period is. Plans are required to allow 60 days, but some plans allow longer (when I worked for an administrator, we had clients with election periods as long as one year, although that was rare).

If the above all falls through, she should negotiate with her provider. Many will give significant discounts to people in hardship positions without insurance, and they may be willing to work with her (especially if they know she will be on medicare soon).

  • Since the OP mentioned she turns 65, they should also check if she is Medicare eligible.
    – pboss3010
    Commented Mar 9, 2020 at 11:40
  • That's a good point, I had assumed the sister would go on Medicare at 65. But if she has been on disability (receiving SSDI checks) for more than 24 months, she would qualify now.
    – dwizum
    Commented Mar 9, 2020 at 12:00

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