Healthcare has become very expensive, and the only way of bridging the cost is getting health insurance. However, finding affordable health insurance is not a walk in the park. There is a lot you have to consider before choosing the perfect plan.
The best way to get health insurance is by doing your own research and deciding which company provides a plan for you.
Not having health insurance is risky. A medical issue like a broken arm can cost more than $16,000 when you don’t have health insurance. Research shows 4% of bankruptcy filings are directly related to medical bills.
Living without insurance presents a financial risk, a simple medical emergency may put you in a hole that may take a long time to come out of. Below are tips on how to get the best health insurance cover.
Best Way to Get Health Insurance
Cheap health insurance plans are available all over. Furthermore, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has made it possible for everyone despite their financial condition to afford health insurance. Doing research and reading different legislation on health insurance can help you know your rights.
Knowledge is power; thus, it will be easier to find the best health insurance plan for you without someone taking advantage of you. Moreover, knowing the options you have is crucial before making your decision. Signing up to a health insurance plan is a big financial decision that needs careful attention.
As much health insurance is important, sticking to your budget is also important in ensuring you don’t mess up your finances. Understanding the basic insurance terms is crucial in knowing the deductions and how billing is done. Knowing how to get cheap health insurance is all about research and knowledge.
How To Get Affordable Health Insurance
There are several ways you can go in finding affordable health insurance. The cheapest health insurance cover with ultimately offer the least coverage. As the healthcare costs rise, so does that of health insurance.
With the internet being easy to access, a simple search will lead to a lot of information including insurance companies and the plans each offer. When doing your research there are several options you will have.
Getting A Cover Directly Through Insurance Companies
All insurance companies have websites with detailed information on the policies they provide being freely available. Some may even have the application process online. However, it is important to go through different insurance company’s product range and compare before making your decision.
Using An Agent Or Broker
Having an insurance agent by your side might be helpful since they are familiar with most insurance policies and may make the decision easier to make. An agent will provide options based on your preference very easily.
Note that there are to types of agents: independent agents and captive agents. Independent agents help you choose plans from any of the insurance companies while a captive agent only offers product from one company.
Using An Online Health Insurance Finder
There are sites that solely dedicated to helping you find a health insurance plan. These sites offer convenience and relieve you of having to go through different company’s websites.
Check out the Special Programs
There are low-cost government subsidized options available. However, you have to qualify for special programs. These programs include Medicaid, Medicare, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
Medicare is for those over 65 years. Meanwhile, Medicaid is those with extremely low incomes, and CHIP is meant for children who don’t qualify for Medicaid. Check your eligibility and enroll for the program you are qualified to.
Consider Taking Short-Term Plans
Taking short-term health insurance plans might be the way to find the cheapest cover. These plans last generally last for three months and are renewable. Furthermore, you can easily get short-term health insurance for as little as $75 a month.
However, there are a couple of shortcomings of this type of plan. First, the ACA regulations do not apply when it comes to short-term plans. This means those having pre-existing conditions might not be considered for this type of plan.
Also, if you get seriously ill, it might be difficult to renew your plan. Furthermore, you will be hit with tax penalties that people without health insurance face since ACA does not consider short-term plans adequate coverage.
Being Part Of Your Spouse’s Or Domestic Partner’s Cover
Many insurance companies offer plans that allow a spouse to be added to the cover. In the same context, you can also check if you qualify to be added in your parents’ policy. This is a cheaper way of people in marriages, for example to get a health insurance plan.
Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA)
This act allows you to stay on your employer’s insurance cover after you have been laid off for up to 18 months. You have to have been part of a group insurance plan with your previous employer. The premiums to this cover may not be very cheap though.
Consider High Deductible Health Plans
If you think you won’t be using your health plan often, taking up a high deductible plan that has low monthly premiums may be the way to go. Based on the ACA, people under or over 30 years who qualify for hardship exemption are eligible for catastrophic plans.
Conversely, set up a health savings account (HSA) if possible after taking this plan. This will allow you to save money on the side that will come in handy when paying for health care.
The Smart and Affordable Way
The cheapest plan might not be the best way to get health insurance. However, it is better than having none at all. With the current high cost of health care, having a health insurance plan is a must to all.
Moreover, more legislation need to be passed to lower the cost of health care in general, thus making it more accessible to all. Health care should be considered a right for all.
Check out this page for more information.