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What is a catastrophic plan and who can buy them?

Catastrophic plans are a new type of plan for individuals under the age of 30, or those who qualify for a “hardship exemption” because they cannot afford other coverage. Catastrophic plans have cheaper monthly costs (your premium) and will cover three primary care visits and preventive services at no cost. But catastrophic plans also have VERY high deductibles, more than $6,000. These deductibles work much like deductibles for car insurance, meaning you have to spend a certain amount of money before the insurance company covers the rest.  In other words, the plans help to provide basic routine care and protect against major medical catastrophes, but may still require significant out-of-pocket spending. Note: You will NOT be able to use tax credits to purchase a catastrophic plan like you would to purchase traditional plans on your state’s Health Insurance Marketplace.