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Maryland Health Insurance

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Updated January 04, 2009

Maryland Insurance Administration

The Maryland Insurance Administration is responsible for regulating all types of insurance sold in the state of Maryland - including health insurance policies.

If you are looking for health insurance coverage, the Insurance Administration can help you find an insurance agent or insurance company that is licensed to do business in Maryland. You can contact them at the phone number listed below, or conduct your own search online.

If you are having trouble resolving a claims dispute with your insurer, you can file a complaint with the Insurance Administration. Contact the Insurance Administration at the phone number listed below, or file a complaint online.

Maryland Insurance Administration
525 St. Paul Place
Baltimore, MD 21202-2272
Phone: 410.468.2000 or 1.800.492.6116 (toll free)

U.S. Department of Labor

If you get your insurance through your job, your plan is also regulated by the U.S. Department of Labor's Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA). They make and enforce the rules that your employer must follow when offering health insurance coverage to employees - for example, your employer cannot single out an individual employee to exclude her from the plan because she (or one of her dependents) has a costly illness. Also, if there are 20 or more employees at your job, you should be offered COBRA continuation coverage when you leave your job. The EBSA works to make sure that all of this happens and your rights are protected.

If you have concerns about your employer's practices in administering your job-based health coverage - for example, if you think you should have been offered COBRA continuation coverage, but were not, or if you feel that you were wrongly terminated from your health plan - contact your regional EBSA office.

U.S. Department of Labor Employee Benefits Security Administration
Washington District Office
1335 East-West Highway, Suite 200
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Elizabeth Bond – Supervisor
Tel 301.713.2000
Fax 301.713.2008

Buying Individual Policies in Maryland

As a general rule, insurers in Maryland are allowed to reject your application for coverage based on your health status. However, you may qualify for coverage as a "HIPAA-eligible" individual if you:

  • had at least 18 months of continuous creditable coverage, the last day of which was under a group plan AND
  • you have exhausted all COBRA continuation coverage which was available to you.

People who are HIPAA-eligible are guaranteed the right to buy insurance through the Maryland Health Insurance Plan (described below). If you are not sure whether you are a HIPAA-eligible individual, your insurance agent or the Insurance Administration can help you find out.

Maryland Health Insurance Plan (MHIP)

MHIP offers coverage to individuals who are unable to purchase an individual health insurance policy because they have pre-existing health conditions. It also covers "HIPAA-eligible" individuals as described above. The MHIP website has information on their eligibility requirements, current premium rates, and benefits available under their program.

Maryland Health Insurance Plan
10455 Mill Run Circle
Mail Stop RR-291
Owings Mills, MD 21117-9185
Phone: 443-738-0667 OR 1-888-444-9016

Maryland Children's Health Insurance Program (MCHIP)

MCHIP provides health insurance coverage for children under age 19 whose families earn 200% of the federal poverty level or less.

MCHIP
Phone: 1.800.456.8900

Maryland Senior Health Insurance Assistance Program(SHIP)

SHIP provides free one-on-one counseling for Medicare beneficiaries with questions about any aspect of Medicare, including the new Part D prescription drug benefit, or Medigap coverage.

Telephone contact information for your local Maryland SHIP office can be found here.

Maryland Senior Health Insurance Assistance Program

Medicaid

Medicaid is a government program designed to help the poor and indigent obtain health care services. Pregnant women and children under age 19 who meet certain income requirements may be eligible for Medicaid coverage, along with aged, blind, and disabled individuals. For more information about Maryland's Medicaid program, including eligibility requirements, contact Maryland Medicaid at the number listed below.

Maryland Medicaid
Phone: 1.800.492.5231 or (410) 767-5800

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