How to Buy Health Insurance

9:18 PM
It isn’t really difficult to purchase health insurance. To begin, you have to shop around as much as you can for the type of policy you would like to purchase for yourself and your family. Are you looking to have long-term health insurance or short-term. If you’re looking for temporary health insurance, you will be able to find 3 month and 6 month health insurance plans with different health insurance providers. Now, you should begin your search for health insurance premiums by first doing your homework on the type of policies that are out there. Narrowing down your search results will allow you to search through them and find a health insurance agency that you want to purchase a policy from. 

Finding Health Insurance Agencies

Using the internet, you will be able to find lots of health insurance agencies around the U.S. Websites like LIQ allow you enter in basic info about yourself in order to retrieve a list of quotes from different health insurance providers across the country. From there, you will be able to begin the underwriting process in order to receive an actual quote. All of the quotes that you receive on the comparison website is only an estimate based on basic info -- gender, age, tobacco use and type of coverage you want. In order for you to get the actual quote, you will need to reveal more details about your health and lifestyle. You will be asked questions about your current health, medical history of family medical background. These will all help the health insurance agency to come up with a monthly premium rate for your policy. Opting for exclusions of your pre-existing medical conditions can help to lower your policy rate as well.

Buying Coverage

When you’re ready to search around for health insurance providers, you need to know the type of health insurance plan you would like to buy. There are various kinds available, so you will need to do your homework if you aren’t already familiar. If you are employed full-time, it is a good idea to check with your employer to see if they offer any group health insurance plans. On a group health plan, you won’t have to worry about high rates due to pre-existing health conditions. You aren’t asked any health questions during the process of applying for coverage. They only need basic info about you regarding your age, tobacco use and gender. You’re not able to choose the type of coverage you want because this is done by the employer. Make sure that you look over the policy to see if you’re able to add on family members and how much you’re paying for the coverage you’re receiving. You can still get additional quotes for individual health insurance to see if it would be cheaper for you. Group health insurance may be a better option if you or someone in your family that you will be insuring under the policy has pre-existing health problems.

Managed care health plans are also available under individual health insurance options. With the individual health insurance, you will likely have to undergo a health screening process that helps to determine your premium rate. One of the cheaper managed health care plans is the HMO (Health Maintenance Organization). These offer low monthly premium payments and low co-payments for preventive services, such as mammograms, doctor visits, baby well-care, x-rays, physicals and emergency care. All managed care plans have a network of preferred providers, but not all plans are as strict. The HMO doesn’t allow you to use outside physicians, you’re only allowed to receive services from network providers. By using an outside physician you will not receive benefits unless during an emergency situation or when it is medically required.

The other two managed health care plans are PPO and POS. The PPO (Preferred Provider Organization) allows you to pick your own doctor from the network of physicians. You receive benefits for the services covered under the policy, which are mostly preventive services like the HMO. With the POS (Point-of-Service) health plan, you can see doctors inside and outside of the network as long as you’ve been referred to them by your primary care physician. If you refer yourself to an outside physician, you will have to pay co-insurance for the services you receive.

Choose the type of coverage you desire wisely. Look into the benefits that are offered and check to see if there are any annual deductibles that must be paid before you receive coverage.

If you need help saving money to afford health insurance, you can start shopping using Groupon. Here, there are thousands of coupons to various sellers, such as Disney Store, Foot Locker and Home Depot.

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