You seem to be paying attention to things that concern a guy like me. I’m trying to figure out my health care coverage while I plan for some big decisions. Why do we still have COBRA and how do I figure it out? If I stop working before I’m eligible for Medicare shouldn’t I be able to buy myself a good policy, no problem? Even if I use an asthma puffer a few times a year?

Josh H.


Dear Josh,

First of all, have you tried hot water with lemon juice, fresh ginger and honey to soothe those bronchial tubes? Not instead of that puffer, of course!

 This is a really good question! There’s so much information out there about health care coverage and quite a bit of misinformation too. And the headlines make it seem like it’s changing all the time. It makes people nervous, have you noticed? Here’s the skinny: COBRA is continuation coverage. It’s the same plan terms you have now with the same carrier. Only you have to pay the whole premium if you stop working. But, there are still reasons why it works for people, even if it turns out to be expensive. Let’s say you don’t want to switch doctors and you can’t find a good ACA policy that they accept, or you’re in the middle of a treatment and you want to finish it without worrying about coverage issues, or you don’t want to deal with the hassle and uncertainty of teasing through the plan shopping process when you’ve got other stuff up in the air—those would be some reasons. COBRA is typically 18 months of coverage (there are some exceptions, but let’s not get all wonky here), so you might want that time to figure things out.

You should definitely seek out the advice of an experienced professional in the field to go over the specific details of your situation.

Does that help? Also, thanks for noticing that we’re paying attention to things that concern you. That warms our Amavan hearts.

Keep Living Well,

Team Amava


We’re trying to cover a lot of ground in our quest to be your hub for ideas and inspiration as you Discover Your Next. We hope our content is thought-provoking and that it raises some questions as you keep planning for an active, engaged life. Ask them here and we’ll publish some answers!