Things to know before picking a health insurance plan in 2021
Are you buying a new health insurance policy in California this year? These policies are nowadays of paramount importance, especially due to the pandemic. Be it personal insurance or through your employer, health insurance benefits are many, and all of them are useful during medical emergencies.
In this post, we shall discuss a few things, knowing which can come in handy before purchasing a policy plan in 2021.
There are Different Types of Health Insurances. Therefore, when purchasing a health policy, ask your agent about the different kinds, and what is best for you. The different kinds of health insurance policies that you may consider are as follows:
- PPO: Preferred Provider Organization
- HMO: Health Maintenance Organization
- POS: Point of Service Plan
- EPO: Exclusive Provider Organization
All of these vary according to their benefits, features, deductibles, tenure, and more. For example, POS provides a primary care physician service; however, EPO does not have much flexibility in this area.
While opting for a policy, keep in mind your medical history, monthly medical expenses, your doctor’s status under your insurance plan, and pre-existing conditions (if any.) You shall also need to keep your medical records handy in case the insurer asks for them as legal documents.
What Kind of Network Does Your Insurance Fall Under?
Does your insurance type provide in-network doctors? These kinds of policies are more affordable and provide a plethora of benefits. If you are visiting a doctor who is out of your insurance’s network, the fees and out-of-pocket expenses are pricey.
Let’s say that you already have a preferred doctor, ask them if they are part of any insurance plan. If they are, inquire from your agent if this doctor falls under your insurance policy. Having local in-network doctors within a plan can eliminate higher costs of treatment, and help receive all other the medical benefits that you deserve.
What are Your Out Pocket Expenses?
Out-of-pocket expenses are what we know as deductibles. Meaning, it is something that you pay out of your savings during an emergency. The rest is under the responsibility of your insurance.
If you have low deductibles, your premium rate will be high as the insurer needs to pay a major half of medical expenses. With higher deductibles come more affordable premium rates as you have agreed to choose a higher deductible, reducing the insurer’s financial burden.
The deductible you choose depends upon various factors such as:
- Your monthly medicine bills
- Your doctors’ fees
- The expenses regarding pregnancy (if you are, i.e.)
- The frequency of your emergency care
- Cost of surgeries (if any in the possible future)
It is best to choose your deductible amount keeping in mind these circumstances.
Follow a Checklist Pre-Purchase
Keeping a pre-purchase insurance checklist can come in handy when you are just about to confirm a health policy. The checklist can include pointers like:
- What is my goal? Is it a lower premium with higher benefits, or vice versa?
- Do I buy medicines frequently?
- Which health insurance company is best for me?
These are some things you can ask yourself to know more about picking a health insurance plan in 2021.