5 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Health Insurance Plan

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Each year, an estimated 10,000 or more Americans die due to a lack of health coverage.

Though you may not want to pay for coverage, especially when you feel well, health insurance protects you both financially and physically. It provides everything you need from preventative care to emergency services.

Though you need a health insurance plan, you do not want to choose your plan blindly. Read on to learn 5 questions to ask insurance companies.

1. What Is the Cost of Insurance?

It may seem like common sense to know exactly what you will pay prior to signing up. But, many people find hidden costs that surprise them.

Straight Forward Costs

You will pay a premium for your plan. This cost will remain constant each month.

Often, you will also pay a copay each visit. This nominal fee costs you much less than the visit itself.

Costs That May Surprise You

When discussing the cost of insurance, ask about your deductible. Sometimes insurance plans will not kick in until you cover a certain amount, like $3,000 or more.

If you end up in the hospital, typically the insurance will require you to pay up to a certain amount of the bill before they take over. This is called the out of pocket max.

This may seem like a lot when you look at a bill for $5,000. But, it will seem like very little compared to a $75,000 hospital bill following an accident.

2. Do You Offer Group Rates?

Like many services, you may pay less with more people. This holds true with family plans and employer insurance since they cover a large number of people.

Ask about how to reduce group health insurance plans for your family or workgroup.

3. What Will My Health Insurance Plan Cover?

Learn ahead of time what your plan takes care of. You want to know how many well-visits they allow each year and if you can see a doctor with coverage anytime you fall ill.

Also, find out what else they cover. Can you visit a chiropractor or acupuncturist?

Pay attention to perks as well. Some insurance companies may cover extras, like a portion of your gym membership!

4. Can I Keep My Doctor?

While your health comes first and foremost, healthcare still runs like a business. Doctors, clinics, and insurance companies will make pacts for financial reasons.

Some insurance companies will give you a list of doctors to choose from. If they do not list your doctor, would you rather switch doctors or continue shopping for a health care plan?

5. How Might Life Changes Affect My Plan?

Your life will not always wait for renewal time to drastically change.

Ask your company about potential changes, like marriage, pregnancy, career change, or chronic illness. Consider if you can live with the changes to your plan if your life takes a new or unexpected direction.

Get Yourself Covered

Ask the right questions and weigh your health insurance plan options. The most important thing is to get coverage soon to avoid financial disaster.

We want to keep you informed on all aspects of life. Read more in our lifestyle section!

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