Finding the best health insurance for 2015 is crucial to every consumer’s well-being. Consumers will want to take the time to compare policies and read the material in the fine lines that determine different features and coverage. The following is some advice for elements to look for in an insurance policy:
The first step a person should take before choosing an insurance policy is creating a list of the services that he or she needs. Obviously, the person will need to visit the doctor when he or she feels ill. However, some policies cover special services that other policies do not cover. The person will want to create a list of necessary special services such as emergency room care, rehabilitation services, mental health assistance, immunizations, preventive care, prenatal care and so on. The consumer will want to check with several providers to see if they offer such services. Additionally, he or she will want to read the guidelines and requirements for each of the services.
The second most important aspect of health insurance is the monthly premium. Monthly premiums can be as low as $50 a month or as high as $600 a month. The amount of the premium depends on the number of covered individuals and other factors such as the deductible, which is another important figure in finding the best health insurance policy. The shopper will want to choose a plan that fits perfectly into his or her budget.
A deductible is a monetary amount that a covered individual must pay before the insurance company makes any payments toward the services. A deductible may be as low as $50 or as high as $2,500 and beyond. A low deductible is every person’s desire. However, a consumer may need to choose a policy with a high deductible just to have a low premium or vice versa. Budgeting and financial planning play a significant role in a person’s health insurance choices.
A copay is a covered person’s contribution to the treatment. For example, a covered person may have to pay the first $10 for a prescription, and the insurance company will cover the rest. A person may have to pay the first $20 for a doctor’s visit or the first $75 of a hospital stay.
Network Size and Stipulations
A person who is shopping for health insurance will want to obtain knowledge on the different types of policies. An HMO or health maintenance organization plan has benefits and disadvantages. The benefit of such plans is that they carry low copays and deductibles. An HMO will usually offer such features as preventive services and routine checkups. The downside of an HMO plan is that the covered party can only receive care from network providers. Additionally, visits to the specialists often require referrals.
A PPO or preferred provider network plan is a little more flexible than an HMO plan is. In other words, the covered person can receive help from an out-of-network provider. However, the copays and deductibles may change in such a case.
POS or point of service insurance is similar to an HMO, but a person can use it as PPO, as well. The option to see out-of-network providers is available for an extra charge.
An indemnity plan is special plan that offers covered persons a discount on services that they receive. They can visit any provider they would like to visit, and the discount remains the same. Some people refer to indemnity plans as fee-for-service plans. Many consumers prefer these plans because of the freedom they have for healthcare providers.
Which Option Is Best for Whom?
The best health insurance plan will be different from one person to the next because of personal needs and situations. For example, a person who frequently moves may want to obtain an indemnity plan because of the flexibility. A person who has a limited income will want to choose an HMO because of the low premiums. An individual with an existing condition will want to select an HMO or PPO policy through the government market via the Affordable Care Act. The person could obtain an insurance policy through an employer, as well. Persons with children will want to choose plans that offer immunizations and preventive services (HMO). A thorough self-assessment is required before an individual can choose “the best” health insurance plan.
A broker can help a consumer to find an insurance plan, as well. A broker is a neutral party that earns a living by connecting people with “the best” insurance companies for their needs. Some of the top health insurance providers for 2015 are Aetna, CIGNA, Blue Cross, United Healthcare, Human, United and Allied Coverage. An interested consumer can begin with that list and start researching each provider for options that match his or her needs. Alternatively, he or she can request that the broker do such.