by James Tuck
Health insurance can be one of the most complicated insurance products to shop for. There are so many different terms and requirements, it can be a daunting challenge for even the most informed consumer. Despite the complex nature of dealing with a complex issue like human health, one thing is constant – people want to save money on their insurance premiums. There are four main ways to help reduce the cost associated with a health insurance premium, leading one to find the most inexpensive health insurance product available.
No Health Assessment
A health assessment is a rigorous medical history a customer must provide. The health assessment is filled out by the individual. It is matched against medical records from the hospitals and doctors offices the individual has visited. If one has a preexisting condition, the more expensive their health insurance is. If a buyer leaves out a medical condition, either by choice or accident, the price of the premium may rise. Insurers may cancel your insurance policy based on faulty information.
Some companies provide cheap health insurance without a health assessment. This means that everyone is accepted at the same price, regardless of health defects. With no screening process to determine the most at risk people, the policy can be a rather inexpensive health insurance policy.
By shopping around to difference companies, a customer can find quality inexpensive health insurance policies to fit their budgets and needs. Each company tailors their products differently, meaning each company may cover or exclude certain things in the lowest priced policy. Some companies may charge more for an individual policy than an employer-based policy. Shopping around is the only way to ensure the price paid is the lowest price possible.
A general rule of thumb is that the largest carriers in the state will provide the lowest price insurance. Smaller companies will lack the resources behind them to pay medical bills if a major illness breaks out. Larger companies are protected by pooling all premiums across the state, and having large reserves of capital.
When looking for a company, a customer should speak with their health care provider, to determine which companies they work with. If a provider does not work with an insurer, it may be the cheapest health insurance, but it won’t cover the primary doctor. Talking with the front desk at the doctor’s office may also tell you which companies offer discounts for people, and which policies process claims the quickest. This information can be helpful when attempting to save money on health insurance.
Another way to reduce health care costs is the levels of copays. Copays are the percentage the customer pays, compared to the health insurance. The lower the percentage for the individual, the higher the cost of the premium, but the lower the individuals pays out of their own pocket. Depending on the type of coverage a cost falls under, copays can be anywhere between 20-80 with the insurance company paying the bulk, to 75-25, with the individual paying the bulk.
For a shopper, copays are a great way to save money. Having a company pick up a percentage of the bill reduces out-of-pocket expenses. Depending on the split, the move could save big money on health care costs, even after the premium payments are made.
Deductibles are another place where one can save money on health insurance. A deductible is the amount of money an individual must spend before the insurance company contributes. The higher the deductible, the lower the premium price, but the more out-of-pocket the individual must pay. To save money on health insurance, one can take the highest deductible. The risk is that one cannot afford the deductible payments, risking financial trouble later on.
For any shopper looking for health insurance, they must remember a few things. A local company may provide a great price, but maybe lack in coverage abilities. A cheaper copay level on the premium price may cost thousands of dollars in expenses above premium price. The same problem exists for deductibles. The more you are expected to pay before insurance provides assistance, the lower the savings. Find a plan that provides no health assessment before enrolling.