Tennessee to offer health coverage for unemployed

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Gov. Phil Bredesen has announced that the state will now offer its Cover Tennessee health coverage program to unemployed and underemployed workers.

The new category is called Tennesseans Between Jobs, and it provides coverage to anyone who has worked at least one 20-hour week in the last six months and had an annual income below $43,000.

The coverage is also available to workers whose hours have been reduced to less than 20 hours a week over the last six months.

Participants will be responsible for paying two-thirds of the monthly premium. That share of the premium will average about $74 a month for nonsmokers who meet the target weight and are in their 30s.

But the monthly responsibility will jump to about $218 a month for overweight smokers in their 60s.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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