America’s 45 million uninsured are often touted as the main reason that the government needs to introduce a public health insurance option and overhaul the health care system.

There is considerable doubt that there really are 45 million chronically uninsured Americans. In Michigan, although Gov. Jennifer Granholm says that there are 1.1 million, some (like former Rep. Bruce Caswell) have estimated that the number is more like 200,000. Nationally, it’s been found that many are not American citizens, some already qualify for Medicaid but don’t apply, and some simply have other priorities.

Many, though, are simply between jobs and would otherwise be insured. For these Michiganders, Crain’s reports that Golden Rule Insurance is helping to fill the need and give temporarily uninsured and low-income Michiganders (and citizens in 18 other states) another option — short-term insurance for as little as $41.50 per month.

“Especially in today’s economy, there is a need for budget-conscious health plans for individuals and families who suddenly find themselves without health insurance through work or school,” said Golden Rule CEO Richard Collins.

Many reformers believe that health care is somehow different from other goods in that the market will not fill the needs of low-income or special needs Americans. This is one of many examples where the market is proving them wrong.

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