How To Save on Health Insurance

With health care costs soaring through the roof, the cost of health insurance premiums are increasing as well. Health insurance is a necessity, however, when you consider the costs of one visit to the emergency room, surgery to set a broken bone, scans, lab and other costs. When your budget is limited, how can you keep the costs of your health insurance premiums down? There are several steps you can take to reduce your health insurance costs and still maintain adequate medical coverage when you need it.

First step is to consider what health insurance options you have. Does your employer offer a group medical benefit? Many employers (and / or labor unions) offer health benefits to full-time employees. Group health insurance is usually the cheapest way to get medical coverage; an employer can negotiate with health insurance companies to get a group health plan at cheaper rates. In addition, many employers will pay part of the premium, reducing your health insurance cost even further. Another consideration is whether your spouse has health coverage available through their employer? If so, compare your health benefits plan to that of your spouse, and decide which health plan is the better buy. It may be possible to have one spouse carry family health insurance coverage and the other drop their health benefits. Many employers have multiple health insurance options, so review these plans as well. Choose the health plan that best meets your needs at the cheapest rate.

If no health insurance coverage is available through your employer, there are other ways to obtain health insurance coverage. Individual and family private health insurance policies are available. Shop and compare benefits and premiums from each health insurance plan. If you and your family are generally healthy, the new Health Savings Account (HSA) may be worth consideration. The HSA is an account that allows you to save tax-free dollars for your medical / health expenses. Similar to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), you are limited in the amount that you are allowed to contribute each year; However, with the HSA, withdrawals for health expenses are not penalized, and no tax is paid on the withdrawal. When paired with a health insurance policy that has high deductibles and low rates, the HSA may be ideal for you. Save money in the HSA for deductibles and co-pays, and you're set.

For those over 65 or permanently disabled, Medicare is available through the federal government. The original Medicare is an 80/20 plan (they pay 80% of eligible expenses and the insured pays 20%) with an annual deductible and a monthly premium. Supplemental health plans are available to cover this deductible and co-pay. These supplemental health plans are usually private and the insured pays a premium. In addition to the original Medicare plan, there are Medicare HMOs. In these Medicare HMO health plans, the Medicare premium is paid to an HMO to provide benefits to the insured. HMO plans are more restrictive in that patients must get care through …

Replace and Revise Health Insurance

If the Trump administration truly wanted to repeal and replace healthcare with all the right intentions, then their main focus would not only be targeted at the American people. The administration should include and focus their attention on these type of organizations as well: the large pharmaceutical companies, healthcare providers and insurers. This small list does not include attorneys whose legal expertise at hand is suing companies around the clock and another reason why healthcare cost is out of control. These manufacturers, providers, insurers and law firms are some of the main reasons why health insurance is so costly. Did you know there is no cap on the amount of money insurance companies can charge their customers' for the amount of their monthly premiums?

There is much talk about tax credits, the rising cost of insurance, social economic barriers, and the possibility of Medicaid being phased out altogether by the year 2020. These topics raise a concern. Where and how are people going to afford any type of insurance? In particular, how will those earning minimum wage and are not part of group coverage through their employer health plans afford insurance? The above complexities and legal jargon being used today is just another way to cause confusion.

This is not an hard fix and just another way to keep the American people bamboozled and baffled. One thing that had been done right to a certain degree was when insurers use to calculate and follow the underwriting process. Underwriting is a process when insurers would get information from the medical information bureau to review your medical history to determine risk tolerance. Today, this process has been eliminated; Therefore, insurance companies do not know who they are insuring which causes ridiculous premiums. One way to lower premiums again is to simply allow the underwriting process to begin again. No one's premiums should be higher than their monthly mortgage, even if the entire family is insured. Insurers need to have the freedom once again to underwrite people who are in good health and adjust monthly premiums based on consumers risk factors.

The mandates that are in place under the Affordable Care Act guidelines should remain intact and no one should be denied coverage. Everyone should still be able to get coverage regardless of their pre-existing conditions and if people are financially challenged then there should be financial assistance available to help people afford health insurance. More than enough money is being spent on everything else, such as defense spending and infrastructure, and not enough on humanity. Some states have what is known as cost share reduction plans (csr) which limits the amount of money people pay on their deductible and limits the maximum out of pocket cost consumers would pay in medical expenses.

Ohio, California, and Georgia to name a few have such plans. In addition, the state of New York, is an perfect example for caring for their residents who are economically challenged. They have insurance available for people based on their …

Health Insurance Costs and Modern Medicine

It seems that the more insurance one has the higher go the fees. Doctors now earn substantially more than they did proportionally few years ago. While they know that their patients can recover most of the cost for their service they rarely get an argument from them. In Australia we have the Medicare system that covers everything for those without private health.

The previous Prime Minister, Tony Abbot, put this extra burden on people that they must have health insurance. Only the pensioners above 75 years are now covered by bulk billing. That is they are not charged and the government pays for them. Prior to the Abbot changes everyone had this type of benefit but the cost was unsustainable.

Because of that rise in fees the government is now looking for ways to cut it back even further. The increase in population from overseas migrants is putting an extra burden on the system. Some of these people will go to two or three doctors in the same day thinking they will get better quicker. Some are also getting extra drugs and selling them overseas.

Modern medicine is expensive and now the vets are also on a par with the medical profession as far as fees go. The debate that they do much the same amount of study is a logical claim but when one has no insurance against their bills it is rather tough for many to afford it. Pet ownership is suffering as a result.

We can’t go backwards to old systems because it becomes too complicated. Once people earn more it is hard to take it away again. This is yet another dilemma the government is dealing with as there appears to be no way they can force a decrease in the cost of the medical bills covered by their program. The cost of private insurance is also rising beyond what most and now afford.

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Health Insurance Solutions Part II

Time and time again there is a solution to every problem, challenge, obstacle or anything else that may cause us to fret. Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8. The Affordable Care Act never stated insurer had to do away with the underwriting process. Several elements to sell plans were implemented to conform and to be compliant with the law which included: essential health benefits which are all necessary; with the exception of pediatric dental and vision coverage, especially for someone who does not have minor children in their custody.

The other element is the fact that carriers could no longer deny coverage to consumers who has more than enough health related conditions with exorbitant premiums, terms in the insurance world “rated” because of preexisting conditions.

This is the major problem facing the health sector and why insurers are unable to measure their risk with finding reasonable rates for the American people. This is a shot in the dark for insurance companies to play a guessing game of not knowing who has chronic health problems on a regular basis and what the cost would be to accurately provide care at reasonable prices. Actuaries’ calculate insurance with a purpose; to estimate risk. No measuring stick, no wonder why carriers have lost money over the last several years and are ready to bail out.

The government involvement in the insurance industry is to govern, not necessarily to run the insurance business. It is sad that large carriers are allowing the government to dictate and rule out the main premise of insurance. This business is built on risk factors. There is no difference if you wanted to purchase homeowners, auto; or any other type of insurance, there are risks with insuring property. Our physical bodies are a higher risk since we are moving objects on the go all the time, we wear out and break down time to time and have to be repaired and healed.

Why aren’t insurers addressing this fact with lawmakers? What are the chances of a mechanical breakdown with stationary buildings? Physical buildings breakdown due to neglect and lack of maintenance, or if someone physically damaged the property for whatever reason. When was the last time you purchased property and casualty insurance and your risk wasn’t taken into consideration for how much you will be charged in premium dollars? Well, it is no different with health insurance.

There is a solution and a plan that will work. It is not about taxes, neither is it about how many people will lose coverage, cutting back on Medicaid, squeezing the poor, the rich getting richer or the other non sense we hear from politicians. Insurers need to be bold and follow the guidelines of the current law, go back to the underwriting process, deny no one coverage and have affordable premiums based on risk the way it was in time past; prior-Affordable Care Act.

As consumers, it is our responsibility to take care of these earthly bodies and to protect our finances while we are …

Health Insurance: Why It Is Important

In case you don’t know, health insurance is a type of assurance that is given based on agreed terms in case the insured person falls sick or needs medical treatment. The insured life may have a chronic condition requiring medical care for years to come. Let’s know more about it.

Who will pay for the medical expenses?

This is one of the most common questions that people ask. If you have a health insurance, you can have the peace of mind that your health will be taken care of. Actually, it is a type of agreement or contract between you (policyholder) and the company providing health insurance. The purpose of the agreement or contract is to provide protection against costs. At times, the costs are so high that the sick person is unable to pay the bills. As a result, the person is unable to get the care he needs to recover.

While you will pay a monthly or annual premium, you should expect that the amount of premium you are going to pay would be far less than the amount you would pay in case of illness.

Keep in mind that health insurance is a type of benefit that a non-profit organization, private business or a government agency provides. In order to figure out the cost, the company gets an estimate of the collective medical cost of all of the people in the state. Then the risk is divided among the policy subscribers.

As far as the concept goes, the insurer knows that one person may suffer from huge unexpected health care expenses while the other person may incur no expenses at all. So, the expense is spread across a large group of people in an effort to make the health insurance much more affordable for all the insured lives.

Aside from this, public plans are funded by the government. Therefore, they offer extra health insurance to the vulnerable groups like people with disabilities and seniors.

Let’s take an example to understand the concept better. A person with Cerebral Palsy needs special treatment through their lifespan. It’s understood that a chronic illness costs a lot more money than a standard care. Cerebral Palsy may result in a physical impairment that may last for the whole life of the sufferer.

The treatment for this condition may require regular doctor visits, many therapies and long hospital stays. Based on the degree of impairment, you may need special health insurance. Many health care professionals will involve, such as vocational therapists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, orthopedic surgeons, radiologists, pediatrician, neurologists and so on.

Some patients may need the services of more than one. Some may even need a speech pathologist, registered dietician, cosmetic dentists or urologist, to name a few.

So, the coverage offered can help you get some relief as far as the burden of the expenses is concerned. If you don’t sign up, you may suffer from a lot of financial strain and you may need help from other sources like …

5 Keys to Choosing the Right Individual Health Insurance Plan

The internet has made it easier to compare different health insurance policies and shortlist health insurance plans. With the right health insurance policy, one can make substantial savings if a family member gets sick. Although there is no golden rule to choose the right individual plan, yet, some common tips help in the decision making process. Five keys to choosing the right individual insurance plan have been listed below:

• Determine your need and your affordability: Even before you start your online search for insurance plans, one needs to be sure about the details of the plan. You need to make sure that the benefits offered by the plan covers what you need for yourself and your family. However, the perfect plan will also come at a considerable cost. As an informed customer, you need to do a proper cost benefit analysis to make sure your trade-off between price and benefit is in the appropriate proportion. If we take into account, frequent trips to the doctors, medications and dental coverage – such scenarios eliminate unsuitable plans and makes the comparison process much easier.

• Don’t overbuy: The scenario is similar to buying a luxury car where the monthly EMI equals your home loan payment. There is no point in purchasing a health insurance policy with benefits which are unlikely to be used at a high and unviable cost. For relatively young and healthy individuals, a policy with a high deductible is more suitable. Deductibles are the amount paid by insurers before certain benefits kick in. A plan with a decent deductible will cost considerably less per month and could save money in the long run.

• Walk through several plans: It is always advisable to go through several plans. In the process, benefits associated with different health insurance plans can be reviewed and analyzed for better decision making. At first glance, some plans may look appealing. Later, the same plan turns out to be a costly affair due to cost sharing arrangement. The burden of medical cost in the future will be a big headache. Hence, going through and analyzing several plans is the best way forward.

• Co-insurance and co-payments: Several health insurance plans require the holder to contribute to the coverage payments. The contribution is called co-insurance and is the portion the customer has to pay after deductible. A co-pay is a flat fee one has to pay while paying a visit to a doctor or specialist. While choosing a personal health insurance policy, consumers should look into co-insurance and co-payments factors.

• Reputation matters: After identifying the price and need of the plan, reputation of the company should also be in the reckoning. Ideally, a company with a long haul in the market should be trusted and relied upon. There are many ways to assess the standing of insurance companies and their health insurance policies.

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The Affordable Alternative to Traditional Individual Health Insurance

As a way to begin let’s define what I mean by traditional health insurance. The traditional health insurance policy is composed of:

The deductible – This is the amount that you have to pay for a medical event before your health insurance will start to pay. In today’s world that deductible is often $3000 or more.

The coinsurance – After the deductible is met most policies require that the insured pay a percentage of all medical costs up to a maximum. Usually the insured pays anywhere from 20% to as much as 50% of every dollar billed.

The copays – In an attempt to make routine health care accessible many policies include a copay for doctor visits and prescriptions in lieu of having to meet a deductible. An example of this is the $10 office visit copay.

Maximum Out-Of-Pocket Costs – This is the most that an insured can expect to pay regardless of how large the medical bills are. As a general rule the maximum out-of-pocket costs for an individual are limited to around $7000. This can be a very misleading number because it assumes that all of your providers are in your network. If they are out of network your costs can be significantly higher.

And finally the “Network” – Virtually every traditional individual health insurance policy is tied to a network of providers. The narrower the healthcare network, the lower the premium. There is too much wrong with “networks” for this article. Suffice it to say that “networks” are the enemy of the healthcare consumer (you).

The Problem Facing Working Americans

The problem is simple: health insurance premiums are too high for most working Americans in the absence of a subsidy and when combined with extremely high deductible and out of pocket costs, healthcare becomes unaffordable. Let’s look at a couple of examples right here in North Carolina.

A non-smoking couple ages 62 and 63 find that their lowest premium option with BCBS of NC is $1999 a month for a $13,300 family deductible with no copays. A plan with a $7000 deductible and $25 office visit copays would cost $2682 per month.

Assuming the least expensive plan the annual cost would be $23,988 annually. And if either person had a medical event such as cancer, the actual cost for healthcare would be $37,288. You have to ask: “Why even have health insurance?”

A non-smoking 30 year old couple found that the least expensive plan would cost $787.84 a month for a $13,300 family deductible with no copays. The least expensive plan that included copays was $1056.88 but had a $7000 deductible and the most restrictive network. Assuming the least expensive plan, should either member of this young couple have a medical event their total annual cost (deductible + premium) would be $16,454.08. That is a devastating amount of money for a young couple.

The simple solution to this problem is a Fixed Benefit Health Insurance. Unlike a major medical policy where the policy pays for all …

Health Insurance Solutions

Much has been said about the latest in the healthcare sector. Politicians’ continue to bicker and have no solid plan to replace the current plan. Certain Analysts believe if this Trump Administration plan passes the Senate their proposal will leave over 23 million people without coverage by the year 2026. The Affordable Care Act law is and was simply put in place to help the American people who were once unable to get any type of coverage, finally get the care he or she may need. Secondly, it has also helped more than enough individuals with pre-existing conditions get coverage as well. And thirdly there is the concern of affordability; this is for people who do not have enough money to pay for insurance on their own, the current law provides financial assistance for those eligible to receive money from the government.

The problem with today’s guidelines are the plans are based on: age, geographic location, the ability to pay, the rising cost of medical technology and taxes. Notice there is nothing mentioned about your overall health conditions. Until the underwriting process is brought back into the equation, then insurers’ will never be able to accurately measure their risk and set premium prices at affordable rates. The message to insurers’ is the fact that no one should be denied health insurance due to their finances or health related conditions to help protect against their financial losses when and if they occurred.

During this era a majority of insurance companies especially those that specialize in the health sector jumped on the band wagon with lower premiums knowing financial assistance would be there to help pay for coverage. Plans were and are designed to basically take the American peoples’ money first before paying any claims. Once the claims began to come from more than enough people, then insurers’ realized their premiums were set too low and began experiencing financial losses. There is no coincidence today why as consumers we hear about large health carriers pulling out of the marketplace and are no longer willing to participate this coming 2018 season under the ACA format.

The solution for consumers, we have to educate ourselves and grasp a good understanding and not listen to all the rhetoric in the media. We need a suite of insurance products to benefit us in the event there are some types of loss. Whether its a loss of life, the inability to work for certain period of time, or failing health our money needs to be protected at reasonable rates. Do this now while you are still healthy with the right kind of life and health insurance plans; underwriting is the key.

There are more than enough life and health insurance companies who offer benefits to protect your money. They never moved into this whole affordable care dilemma. Insurance today is still being sold on the premise of an individual’s risk factors. These type of plans whether they are: accident, cancer, critical illness, dread disease, hospitalization, preventive care …

Health Insurance Quotes Without Giving Your Phone Number

Getting health insurance quotes without giving your phone number is easy and something you should do right now. Whenever you are online do you stop when asked for your phone number and best time to call? I do…I can’t stand to be interrupted at home…especially by a salesperson.

Asking for your phone number is an intrusion most people avoid. The bad news is they are unaware of market conditions in personal health insurance. Health insurance is an expensive, necessary evil but it should be something you should never overpay for. Asking for a phone number is a turnoff. But there is good news…

You can get up to a hundred health insurance quotes without giving your phone number. You are asked for the following and the following only, for each person you are trying to insure:

· Zip code

· Gender

· Date of Birth

· Smoker or not

· Student or not

That is it…no phone number…no medical questions.

My wife and I have used this free, no obligation service for 8 years. I hate to spend a penny on insurance of any kind. But I have the assurance that I am paying the very least amount for my policy.

I filled this out just the other day…it took less than a minute…I received 112 different policy quotes to choose from…the quotes had the monthly premium, company name, deductibles, co pays, and a real plus…I could find out if my current doctor accepted this policy.

You should know what kind of policy you are looking for. Since we are healthy, exercise and eat right, we look for high deductible catastrophic coverage. These have the very lowest premiums.

But the prices vary greatly…I identified a savings of $684 per year over what I am paying now. So you should use this free service every several months. It is easy fast…and no one will call.

Once you narrow down the policy that meets your needs you then fill out one application and one application only. Isn’t this better and far faster than talking to several dozen salesmen or saleswomen. That is what you would have to do to get the same amount of information with every other service on the web.

Wouldn’t you rather get health insurance quotes without giving your phone number?

Here’s how…

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How to Find the Best Individual Health Insurance Plans

If you are after the best individual health insurance plan, you are probably looking for the best long term requirements of a coverage policy. First of all, it is not that easy to find the best individual health insurance plan which will ultimately meet all your needs.

The first step that you must take is to look for other plans that will enable you to realize its benefits in such an easy manner. With numerous diseases continually plaguing the environment, it is possible that you might lose your savings overnight on account of the numerous medical procedures and tests that will be necessary for your treatment. This is why it is very vital that you find the best individual health insurance plan that will invariably protect your savings in the near future.

Before locating the best health insurance provider or company, consider researching about the reliability quotient of your prospective insurance provider. For you to avail the best type of plan, check and review the company’s market record and the number of years it has been in active operation. The length of its service is a manifestation as well as evidence of the company’s credibility and dependability. You may also consult friends and family members who are also associated with other reliable companies.

Once you’re done with your research and have surprisingly obtained a reliable and dependable mark from the company’s performance, send a request letter to the company and inquire about their best individual health insurance deal. Feed them with the necessary information about your personal requirements and let them find the perfect plan suitable for you.

Just before you close a deal, it is very important that you take the time to compare different rates. The insurance quotes that you will obtain from a specific company may not usually require you to sign up with them right away. Take your time in reviewing their terms and conditions.

Be sure that you follow the coverage policy as this will indicate that the insurance rates that have been offered to you are the best individual health insurance rates there are. Make sure to look over the health coverage expenses and needs that are provided. There are occasional scenarios where the cheapest and affordable plans are not always the best. Moreover, there is a need for you to look over the terms and conditions of the health coverage that are normally offered with the health plan. You might also obtain a bit of extra money to secure the best individual health insurance plan which has the ability to offer you comprehensive benefits, since these are financially beneficial after all.

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