Health Insurance options can vary significantly by state. Most States have the "Blues" for health insurance which is typically Blue Cross Blue Shield. The health insurance market is starting to offer more competition by private carriers. It's important to choose a strong, stable carrier for your health insurance as rates and benefits can change for your health insurance policy based on the how well the carrier is managed. Whether health insurance for an individual, family, small group, or person with Medicare, you will be able to get a comprehensive quote for the strongest carriers in the health insurance market. Just click here to get your free health insurance quote and proposal.
Health Insurance is one of the most important decisions you can make to protect yourself, family or employees. Each State's health insurance options are different but there some important considerations that are universal in choosing the right health plan. You can find more detailed information on health insurance options to the left but first some key points:
1. Insurance Carrier strength. Health Insurance is different from other types of coverage in that what you purchase today...is not necessarily what you will have tomorrow. Carrier stability is very important. It will drive rate and benefit stability in the future. Occasionally, less secure carriers will come into a market offering health benefits for discounted prices. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Choose wisely as it may be difficult to move around at a later date based on health.
2. The trend towards High Deductible and away from HMO's. It's pretty obvious but the main issue today with health insurance is cost. Premium have roughly tripled in the last five years and it's partially due to the design of plans. Plans that offer very rich benefits will become more and more expensive...at faster pace in fact. This traditionally includes HMO's, Indemnity plans, and high-end PPO plans. The cost of these plans will rarely be worth the added benefits. It's simple...the plans with the most utilization will go up faster. You can find more great information on analyzing the plans based on this here under Health Insurance 101. Health Savings Accounts are an example of plans that will be the trend going forward.
3. The Plan Break Down. This is probably the best thing you can ever read before looking at the countless options. It's a rough sketch so make sure to read the benefits in detail but it will save you from hours of mind-numbing benefit charts and comparisons.
Typically, health plans break down into three main areas (assumes in-network for covered benefits):
Office Consultation. You usually have some sort of copay (fixed amount) or co-insurance (percentage) on the office visit depending on the plan. There are some catastrophic plans (also called major medical or hospital plans) which do not cover Office visits at all or include them in the main deductible.
Prescription. RX is typically broken out separately with copays. Generally, there is a distinction between Brand name and Generic with a possible separate deductible for Brand name. Some plans do not cover RX at all so double check.
Other Services. For many plans, other covered benefits are subject to the main deductible. Usually, you pay a percentage after the deductible is met until the Max out of pocket is met in a calendar year. There may be separate copays for specific coverages such as ER or Maternity.
You can find more great information on comparing the right direction for your health insurance options at our Health Insurance 101 section.
Each State's carriers and plans are different so it's best to first start with your state's free health insurance quote here.