South Carolina Health Insurance

South Carolina’s workers, families, seniors, and children simply can’t afford to go long without quality health insurance coverage. Although millions have difficulty affording it, plenty of government assistance programs exist to help individuals and families in need. The Simple Dollar has compiled a number of resources, links, and data to inform and educate South Carolina residents about their health care options in their home state.

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Stats in Your State

In order to understand how the health insurance industry works, consumers should become familiar with the vital statistics that affect the industry and dictate premium rates. Check out the data points below to gain a clearer understanding of how healthcare in South Carolina measures up against the rest of the country.

Chip Medicaid

Nearly 600,000 South Carolina residents utilized government-administered health care plans in 2009, however those enrollment numbers dropped the following year by roughly 35,000 in 2010, due either to ineligibility on the part of many policyholders or the availability of employer-based health plans for many residents.

Individual Health Insurance Premiums

The average South Carolina worker paid $1,226 for employer-sponsored health insurance in 2011, roughly $136 more than the national average. Only workers in Georgia, who paid roughly $150 more than the national average, paid more for health insurance in the South Atlantic Region.

Family Health Insurance Premiums

In addition to the high cost of single-payer health insurance, South Carolina families saw their premiums soar nearly $800 above the national average in 2011. At $4,736 per month, rates in South Carolina were higher than any other state in the region.

SAHIE Health Insurance Uninsured

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, roughly 785,000 South Carolinians went without health insurance coverage in 2010, a record high compared to the previous five years. Affordable healthcare options across the state are clearly needed.

Rules in Your State

Just because you have a policy and make your payments doesn’t mean you can afford to ignore the rules and regulations that affect your health insurance policy. Below readers will find links to the relevant legislation and regulations that govern the insurance industry.

Claims Settlement Practices: The above link directs to the insurance regulations applying to claims practices, and sets forth general guidelines for insurers to follow when settling claims of any kind. If you plan on making a claim, be sure to check this out.

South Carolina Insurance Regulations: If you think you’re powerless against the insurance companies, you’re not. These regulations have been implemented over the years by the Insurance Commissioner to regulate the industry and address specific issues as they arise.

Insurance Statutes and Legislation: Learn about the general legislation that applies to the insurance industry, it further covers business structures and trade practices.

South Carolina Rules: Alcohol & Your Health Insurance

Losses Due to Intoxication
Health Insurance Parity for Alcohol-Related Treatment
South Carolina law specifically permits insurers to deny benefits for losses arising from intoxication.
Health insurance coverage in South Carolina must offer treatment of alcohol-related disorders, but are not required to provide the same levels of benefits for alcohol-related disorders as they do for medical and surgical conditions.
Health insurance plans that cover alcohol-related disorders MAY NOT be subject to higher deductibles higher premiums, or more restrictive financial limits on lifetime treatment for alcohol-related disorders than for medical and surgical coverage.

Representatives & Resources in Your State

The Department of Insurance is a great starting point for consumers to learn more about how insurance works in South Carolina, and for advocacy on difficult insurance issues. Readers will also find links to other social benefit programs below.

South Carolina Department of Insurance
P.O. Box 100105
Columbia, SC 29202
(803) 737-6160
Contact Information
Consumer Complaint Resource
Health Insurance Information
The Insurance Department is a great resource of information on health insurance and the various elements that affect the industry.
Health Care Reform Information
With sweeping changes set to be implemented across the healthcare industry in 2014 and 2015, it’s important to understand how these developments will affect you. Click the link above for more details.

South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services
P. O. Box 8206 Columbia
SC 29202-8206
(888) 549-0820
The Department of Health and Human Services provides essential support and assistance to children of low-income families, seniors, disabled persons, and other people who require assistance to stay healthy.

South Carolina Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)
South Carolina’s CHIP plan offers health care coverage to children of low-income families across the state, and is responsible for insuring tens of thousands of South Carolina children.

South Carolina Health Care Voices
South Carolina Health Care Voices works for healthcare reform and awareness, and seeks to assist consumers with information on their options for affordable health insurance in South Carolina.