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Health insurance

Health insurance is one of the most important things that protect the welfare of you and your family. It is especially important nowadays with the outbreak of the Coronavirus and the aftermath that it leaves behind. Since health insurance is a very complicated subject, we would like to take this opportunity and to answer some of the most common questions people have in order to tell you about the different types of health insurance and their costs.

Types of Health Insurance

Type of Health Insurance Plan Suitability
Individual Health Insurance plan Individual
Family floater Health insurance plan Whole Family - Self, spouse, children and parents
Group Health cover Corporate Houses
Senior citizen health Insurance Citizens from the age of 65 and above
Critical Illness Health Cover Can be used to fund expensive treatments
Super Top-Up Policy One can use it When the sum insured of existing policy is exhausted

There are four main types of health insurance that are available:

  1. Traditional health insurance - This works the same way as your car insurance i.e. you pay a certain fee and when you use it when you need it. Just call the insurance company after the visit, fill out the paperwork, send them the necessary documents and they pay their share of the bill. This is by far the most common form of insurance out there and is offered by pretty much all private insurance companies out there.
  2. Preferred Provider Organizations (PPO) - Imagine a network of healthcare providers coming together and agreeing to lower the price of care in exchange for staying within the network. Almost 90 million Americans have been enrolled in PPOs and it remains fairly popular since you can sign up to see a specialist without having to get special permission.
  3. Point of Service plans - This plan is fairly similar, but it introduces a new complication: if you would like to see a specialist, you will have to do so through your primary care physician. On the upside, this plan usually offers coverage for more preventive measures and sometimes even covers things like workshops and incentives to drop unhealthy habits.
  4. Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO) - This is the least expensive choice out there, but it comes with drawbacks: it is also the least flexible type of insurance you can find. Not only are you required to visit only their doctors, but there are times when you will also have to receive permission from them to go to the emergency room. However, since it does offer reduced costs, it remains a very popular choice among patients.
Type Monthly rate Annual rate
HMO $479 $5,742
POS $509 $6,108
PPO $561 $6,732
EPO $491 $5,892

Now that we know about all of the types of health plans out there, let’s find out how much all of this costs.

How Much Does Health Insurance Cost?

According to the latest statistics, a family of four pays $20,576 a year for health insurance in 2020. While this is a huge sum of money, you should not be alarmed because the companies where those people worked picked up about 70% of the tab. t. There are so many factors that have to be taken into account here. A lot of people don’t know this but the price for health insurance fluctuates significantly with each state. In fact, the highest premium for a 207-year-old this year is in Wyoming which is $723. Someone living in New Mexico will only pay a fraction of this amount since the average plan there is $282.

State Monthly Annual % change vs. avg.
Alabama $488 $5,858 -4.48%
Alaska $614 $7,362 20.06%
Arizona $487 $5,839 -4.79%
Arkansas $405 $4,860 -20.76%
California $576 $6,916 12.77%
Colorado $390 $4,680 -3.31%
Connecticut $356 $4,272 -11.73%
Delaware $475 $5,704 -6.98%
Florida $554 $6,652 8.47%
Georgia $490 $5,883 -4.07%
Hawaii $456 $5,468 -10.84%
Idaho $344 $4,125 -14.77%
Illinois $537 $6,442 5.04%
Indiana $420 $5,043 -17.77%
Iowa $561 $6,726 9.68%
Kansas $517 $6,204 1.17%
Kentucky $455 $5,460 -10.96%
Louisiana $596 $7,157 16.70%
Maine $509 $6,108 -0.40%
Maryland $331 $3,971 -17.96%
Massachusetts $449 $5,382 11.19%
Michigan $417 $5,003 -18.42%
Minnesota $352 $4,222 -12.78%
Mississippi $500 $6,000 -2.16%
Missouri $578 $6,934 13.06%
Montana $448 $5,375 -12.35%
Nebraska $648 $7,781 26.88%
Nevada $430 $5,163 6.67%
New Hampshire $383 $4,593 -25.11%
New Jersey $501 $6,008 -2.03%
New Mexico $364 $4,366 -28.81%
New York $698 $8,377 36.60%
North Carolina $490 $5,883 -4.07%
North Dakota $387 $4,638 -24.36%
Ohio $456 $5,473 -10.76%
Oklahoma $588 $7,051 14.98%
Oregon $441 $5,295 -13.65%
Pennsylvania $471 $5,647 -7.92%
Rhode Island $286 $3,426 -29.22%
South Carolina $501 $6,011 -1.98%
South Dakota $556 $6,669 8.745%
Tennessee $491 $5,894 -3.89%
Texas $508 $6,093 -0.64%
Utah $493 $5,920 -3.46%
Vermont $530 $6,357 31.32%
Virginia $466 $5,593 -8.79%
Washington $340 $4,080 -15.70%
West Virginia $666 $7,995 30.38%
Wisconsin $486 $5,827 -4.98%
Wyoming $766 $9,191 49.88%
National Average $511 $6,132 0.00%

Since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, there are many more options for health insurance that are available to people since the program offers subsidies to help make health insurance more affordable for everyone involved.

There are different levels of plans offered that can satisfy any budget. There are catastrophic plans that have low premiums but hardly cover anything at all, and then there are platinum level plans that cover everything but have higher premiums.

If you want to get health insurance, check with your state’s exchange and see what they have to offer you. Some states have done their own thing, but there is also the federal exchange for states who haven’t made their own mission for providing their residents with health insurance.

Type Monthly premium Annual premium
Catastrophic $324 $3,888
Bronze $415 $4,976
Expanded Bronze $426 $5,112
Silver $560 $6,723
Gold $618 $7,416
Platinum $732 $8,787

Find out what you can get for yourself and your family in the way of health coverage. The ACA enabled many people to get health insurance for the first time, and still is opening up health insurance doors. However, the information about this is always changing so keep checking back here to see what you can get.

The Affordable Care Act was a big deal because it provided Medicare for everybody and it also introduced new regulations for insurance companies. For example, the insurance companies no longer can charge people more for preexisting conditions and children can remain on their parent's policy until the age of 26. This was a big game changer and it allowed people to get the coverage they need.

Insurance at Different Stages of Life

As we get older, we start needing more care. This is why it is important to know about all of the types of health insurance at different stages of your life. First of all, think about if long-term care is right for you. It is definitely good to have since it will pay for custodial care such as nursing homes and assisted living facilities. A lot of people do not buy this insurance because they think that the government will pay for it, but Medicare will not pay for long-term custodial care. Therefore, if you are in your fifties, it is a good idea to start buying this plan while premiums are still relatively cheap.

If you are still working and you rely on this income, it is strongly recommended that you buy disability insurance. While your job might offer worker’s compensation benefits, it might not be enough to cover all of your costs. This health insurance will be especially helpful if you do not have a lot of savings.

If you are just starting out and got your first job, your employer should offer you a health insurance policy. Usually, this will be enough to cover medical costs since young people do not have a lot of health issues. They tend to just go for their annual checkups and only if there are issues found, they will go see a specialist. In case you need more coverage than what your job offers you, keep in mind that there is still federal coverage available to you.

How Do I Choose a Health Plan

First things first. From who are you going to buy coverage from? This is important considering the wide choice of options you have. We already mentioned that the Affordable Care Act offers some coverage but you pretty much have all of your options on the table here. So if your job offers insurance you can get it there or you can even buy it yourself from a private provider. The important thing is to have something that you are comfortable with even if it takes a while to look.

Look back at all of the various types of plans we mentioned above. A lot of people choose to go with the traditional plan by paying a premium every month and using insurance when you need it. Usually, there is a tradeoff. The lower the price of the insurance, the less flexibility you will get. At this stage, it is important to take into account all of your medical needs and try to predict future expenses. Think about the treatments you needed in the past and whether or not you will need them in the future.

Usually, patients have a doctor that they alway choose to visit. This can be a general practitioner or a specialist. Be sure to ask if this doctor will be in the network. If not, then you need to think about how important this is for you. Also, ask about how much it will cost to visit out of network doctors as well.

Ask about the out-of-pocket expenses. This information should be clearly presented in the summary of benefits. This is where it is a good idea to become familiar with some technical jargon like copayments, deductibles, and coinsurance. You will have an option to choose a plan that will cover a higher percentage of the bill in exchange for paying a higher premium. This may be worth it if you have health conditions that require you to visit the doctor on a regular basis.

Putting It All Together

You have to take all of the information that we presented and apply it to your specific situation. This means that you will need to evaluate the type of coverage you are looking for and how likely you are to use the insurance over the course of the year. If you feel that you will only need the basic coverage, you certainly have that option. However, you should always buy more just in case.

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