Minimum essential coverage (MEC)
Any insurance plan that meets the Affordable Care Act requirement for having health coverage. To avoid the penalty for not having insurance for plans 2018 and earlier, you must be enrolled in a plan that qualifies as minimum essential coverage (sometimes called “qualifying health coverage”). Examples of plans that qualify include: Marketplace plans; job-based plans; Medicare; and Medicaid & CHIP.
Note: Starting with the 2019 plan year (for which you’ll file taxes in April 2020), the penalty no longer applies.