Each year, millions of Americans make decisions about which insurance plans to sign up for. When it comes to insurance plans, there are many factors to consider. There are state-run and federally-run exchanges. Within these marketplaces are different plans such as HMOs, PPOs, EPOs, and POS. These determine what in-network means and how much you will be spending out-of-pocket.
Contrary to popular belief, you need to force yourself to look beyond monthly premiums when comparing different insurance plans. Most people think that premiums are the only thing that matters and deductibles are associated with hypothetical emergency care. They take into account their age and the likelihood of disease or an accident. The truth is that deductibles are a very real fact of life that needs to be taken seriously. In addition to deductibles, co-payments and prescriptions can also add up. Everything needs to be taken into account when deciding on a plan.
Keeping in mind all of the unknowns about the future, experts recommend that you should use what you currently know about your health needs as a base point. If you have a doctor you like, for example, then it’s important to choose a plan that keeps him in-network. Likewise, if you tend to use a certain prescription drug by name, look for a plan that covers them. One of the benefits of searching HealthCare.gov allows you to add your provider and your prescription drugs as you browse plans to see whether they’re covered. A tool available on HealthCare.gov acts as an estimator for yearly costs, based on a number of factors, including a plan’s deductible, copays for doctor’s visits and specialists, and how often you anticipate visiting the doctor in the coming year.
When you search for health insurance on the internet, you may stumble on short term plans that advertise much lower monthly premiums, but don’t meet the requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). If something looks too good to be true, it most definitely is. You could be missing out on important coverage like prenatal and mental health treatment. A new tool this year has been added to help potential customers find the perfect match without being scammed. Following the methodology of Yelp and Amazon, people can read reviews and look at a star rating system to see which plans to avoid.