Louisiana: Healthcare and Health Insurance Information

Updated on: October 26th, 2020

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If you need temporary medical coverage, you have options. Pivot Health offers budget-friendly short term health insurance plans in Louisiana. Many of our short-term medical plans include key benefits such as doctor office visits, prescription drug coverage, in-hospital coverage and more. With a Pivot Health temporary insurance plan, you get:
  • Up to 180 days of coverage with the ability to re-apply for up to three years.
  • Flexible deductible, coinsurance, and coverage period maximum benefit options.
  • Rates that are up to 50 percent lower than individual major medical insurance on the federal exchange.
  • Freedom from networks—you can choose any doctor or hospital on many plans.
Pivot Health membership packages also come with several non-insurance benefits such as:
  • Unlimited access to telehealth consultations. Telehealth doctors are available 24/7. And at $49 per consultation, the cost is lower than a standard office or urgent care visit.
  • Discounts on eye care and eyewear. You’ll enjoy savings that range from 15% to 40% on eye exams, glasses, and contacts.
  • Discounts on prescription drug coverage. You’ll save up to 75 percent on prescription drugs at thousands of pharmacies across the nation.
How do you know if a short term health plan is right for you and your family?
  • You have a 90-day employer waiting period at a new job.
  • You retired early and aren’t eligible to enroll in Medicare yet.
  • You’re unable to afford COBRA coverage.
  • You’re turning 26 and are no longer eligible to stay on your parents’ plan.
  • You need an option besides an Affordable Care Act (ACA) plan.
The short term health insurance application process is quick and easy (five minutes or less). You’ll know whether you’re approved within minutes and can select a coverage date as quickly as 24 hours after you apply.

Louisiana Health Insurance Exchange Challenges

Louisiana uses the federally-run health insurance exchange. Unfortunately, the individual market has struggled to stabilize. Premium subsidies rose significantly in 2018 after cost-sharing reduction funding was eliminated, but shrunk slightly in 2019 as average premiums went down. Exchange plan premiums have fluctuated wildly as well. For example, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana (BCBS) raised rates by up to 35.5% for some plans in 2018. In 2019, BCBS premiums fell by as much as 15% due to the significant increase the previous year. Enrollment in individual plans also dropped from a high of 214,148 in 2016 to 92,948 in 2018 due in large part to Louisiana expanding Medicaid to individuals just outside former eligibility rules. 

A Report on Louisiana’s Wellbeing

A 2017 Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index surveyed 2.5 million people across the country to evaluate how they perceived their overall wellbeing. The report examined well-being by state in each of these five categories:
  • Purpose: liking what you do and motivation to achieve your goals.
  • Social: having supportive relationships and love.
  • Financial: managing your life to reduce economic stress and increase stability.
  • Community: liking where you live, feeling safe, and feeling part of a community.
  • Physical: having good enough health to tackle daily tasks.
The national well-being score was 61.5 in 2017, down from 62.1 in 2016. Louisiana scored 58.8 overall, ranking 49th, the state’s lowest rank ever. Residents ranked poorly in four out of five categories:
  • 42nd in Social
  • 45th in Physical
  • 49th in Financial
  • 50th in Community
Yet Louisianans appears to be more optimistic when it comes to Purpose, ranking 27th in the category.

Children’s Wellbeing in Louisiana

Louisiana ranks 49th in children’s overall well-being, according to a 2019 Kids Count Profile by the Anne E. Casey Foundation. Poverty and lack of secure employment for parents affect children across the state. The report found:
  • 10.7% of babies had low birth weights, holding steady from 2010 to 2017. (8.3% is the national average.)
  • 28% of children live in poverty, compared to the national average of 18%.
  • 20% of children live in high-poverty areas, compared to 12% nationwide.
  • 33% of children have parents who lack secure employment, compared to 27% nationwide.
The state has made gains in the areas of children’s health insurance and teen pregnancy rates. As of 2017:
  • 3% of children were uninsured, compared to 5% nationwide.
  • There were 29 teen births per 1,000 down from 48 per 1,000 in 2010.
Teen drug use also remains low (4%) and is in line with the national average.

The State of Health in Louisiana

A 2019 County Health Rankings report evaluated health outcomes within the state, comparing the results by county and nationwide. Louisiana residents reported poorer than average health and lifestyle habits, contributing to high obesity and diabetes rates. The report found:
  • 21% of adults have fair or poor health, compared to 16 percent nationwide.
  • 35% of adults are obese, compared to 29 percent nationwide.
  • 29% of adults age 20 or older report no leisure-time physical activity, versus 22 percent nationwide.
  • 23% of adults are current smokers, compared to 18 percent nationwide.
  • 12% of the population under 65 is uninsured, compared to 10% nationwide.
  •  Adults report an average of 4.2 poor mental health days per 30 days, compared to 3.8 nationwide.
Health outcomes also vary significantly by race and ethnicity in Louisiana. For example:
  •  25% of black residents report fair or poor health, compared to 22% of Hispanics and 18% of whites.
  • 15% t of black babies have a low birth weight, compared to 8% of white babies and 7% of Hispanic babies.
  • 12,700 black residents die prematurely every year, compared to 8,400 whites and 4,700 Hispanics.

Best and Worst Louisiana Counties for Overall Health Outcomes

The five highest-ranked counties for overall health are:   
  1. Cameron
  2. Ascension
  3. St. Tammany
  4. Lafayette
  5. Plaquemines
The five lowest-ranked counties for overall health are:
  1. St. Helena
  2. Catahoula
  3. Madison
  4. Moorehouse
  5. East Carroll

Diabetes in Louisiana

Louisiana ranks among the states with the highest prevalence of diabetes. According to a 2017 State of American Well-Being report, 14.4% of residents have the condition, up from 11.8% in 2009. By comparison, the overall diabetes rate nationwide grew from 10.8% to 11.5% during that same period. Risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes include obesity, age, physical activity, race and ethnicity, and genetic predisposition. Given Louisiana’s obesity rate and residents’ lack of physical activity, the state is likely to see higher rates of diabetes in the future.

2019 Health Insurance Plans in Louisiana

Three health insurance carriers offer plans through the federal exchange program. These are:
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana
  • HMO Louisiana
  • Vantage Health Plan

Medicaid Enrollment in Louisiana

Louisiana expanded Medicaid eligibility in 2016 through the Affordable Care Act provision. About half a million residents gained coverage as a result, making Louisiana the exception to the national trend of stalling—or falling—enrollment. A Louisiana State University survey found that the state’s uninsured rate fell from 22.7% to 11.4% from 2015 to 2017. Nearly all the gains in coverage are due to Medicaid expansion. However, stronger computer checks for eligibility resulted in more than 30,000 residents getting dropped from Medicaid in 2019.

Your Health Care Coverage Choices

If you’re a Louisiana resident who needs coverage, Pivot Health’s short term health insurance offers a temporary alternative while you determine when you can enroll in a major medical plan. You’ll get the coverage you need, without struggling to pay your monthly premiums.    Pivot Health: offering you choices and flexibility that pivot with your insurance needs over time.
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