Do not approach health insurance with fear. It is true the field is complex and your options are many, but the more you learn, the safer you will feel. Health insurance is similar to healthcare itself. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. By making smart choices when you select health insurance, you can avoid difficulties in the future.
It is important to plan for the higher cost of an individual policy versus a group policy often offered by employers. It is possible you might have to be satisfied with a higher deductible and/or less coverage. Get quotes from several different insurance companies to find the best rates and coverage.
Your prescription benefits can change from year to year, so check with your insurance provider on an annual basis to make sure that you still have the coverage you expect. Every year, when you re-enroll in your insurance plan, your insurance company has the right to change the plan terms. Read all the paperwork when you re-enroll and ask your insurance agent to clarify anything you’re confused about. In particular, keep an eye on the prescription drugs covered by your plan and note changes that may occur from year to year. If a pill you are using every day is no longer covered, you might want to switch to another insurance company.
Health insurance can help you pay less taxes. One commonly-overlooked tax benefit is that your premiums are actually tax deductible. Also, any money spent on your deductible, prescriptions and any doctor visits that your insurance provider does not cover, can help you save money on your taxes. State and federal taxes can differ, so double check the guidelines.
Most health insurance plans have loopholes, and yours is probably not an exception. Make sure you read the policy thoroughly, so there are no surprises about what it doesn’t cover. Be prepared beforehand to pay for certain things out of your pocket, such as certain medicines or treatments.
No matter what, you will save money by buying generics over brand name drugs. Generic drugs contain the same active ingredients as brand name medications, and are available for most prescription medications.
Choose the health insurance policy which fits your needs to a “T”. You can select a POS, HMO or PPO. Each can be significantly different than the other, so really consider each before deciding. If you have an established relationship with a trusted physician, you should verify that he or she is considered a preferred participant on your plan’s network.
Check to see if your doctors accept the insurance that you’re thinking about purchasing. Finding a list of the doctors and hospitals that accept this insurance is as easy as checking the site of the insurance provider you are considering.
Catastrophic health insurance is an excellent choice for anyone who cannot pay for a comprehensive insurance policy but wants at least minimal coverage in case something unexpected happens, such as an injury, accident or life threatening illness. Catastrophic coverage is also a helpful addition to any existing health insurance because it will cover extreme circumstances that other policies might not.
If you are thinking about catastrophic health insurance, you need to do some serious research. You have to make sure that the insurance will cover catastrophic events that may affect you. Once you have decided, get a Health Savings Account and start making deposits to cover your deductible if the worst should happen.
Take some time to familiarize yourself with the contents of your health insurance manual for future reference. Your provider will send you a booklet covering all the details of your policy and reading it cover to cover is the only way to fully understand all of the benefits available to you. Although the policy may be confusing, it contains critical information that you need to know.
Do not learn about the shortcomings of your insurance coverage during an emergency or illness. You should prepare beforehand for emergencies by knowing and understanding your policy details and alternative choices available. If you do find that you have inadequate or poor health insurance, you have the ability to change this situation.