If you are traveling overseas, you will surely want to be prepared for any eventuality. That’s why it’s very important that you take the time to purchase travel health insurance before you leave. When you are in a strange land with no friends or relations around, you will be stuck if something happens to you. You might end up with exhorbitant out-of-pocket expenses simply because you have no guidance in choosing a doctor and no assistance in paying. That’s why it’s extremely important that you protect yourself and be prepared with a good travel health insurance policy.
If your looking into personal health insurance some companies will let you take a “free look” or a “test drive” of the coverage. What this means is that you would have a certain amount of time to actually try out the insurance that way you will fully understand the coverage. Within that certain period of time if you are not satisfied you can get a full refund.
If your health is not very good or if you have young children, you should definitely subscribe to a health insurance. Many people do not have a health insurance or are not satisfied with the coverage that comes as a benefit of their job. You could save a lot of money on hospital bills and avoid stress in case of illness with a health insurance.
One of the health insurance options that may be offered to you during your employer’s open enrollment season is an HMO. You might want to choose this option if you want to keep costs low and are willing to coordinate your care through a primary care physician. Under an HMO, the number of options you have for choosing a provider may be more limited than under a more flexible plan.
Get a copy of your health care plans drug formulary and make sure that any medication prescribed to you is on that list. Every insurance company has a different formulary that shows what they cover. The out of pocket cost of an uncovered prescription can be in the hundreds of dollars so make sure that you are covered.
If you have health problems, be sure to shop around for your health insurance. Some insurance providers have more liberal medical guidelines when compared to their competitors. For example, some insurance companies allow a total cholesterol level of up to 270 to qualify for their cheapest policies, whereas other insurance companies specify a total cholesterol level of up to just 230.
Make sure that you read the fine print before singing a contract for medical insurance. Otherwise, you may end up agreeing to terms that you do not like. If there are words in the contract that you do not understand, ask a family member or friend to help you or look it up on the internet.
If you use prescription medications and are on a health insurance plan, check with your insurer to see if 90-day prescriptions are available in pharmacies. 90-day refills have long been available by mail, but now they are becoming available in local pharmacies – which means you get the full cost benefit of a 90-day prescription (essentially 90 days’ worth of drugs for a 30-day payment), without having to wait for the medications to come in the mail. It’s a tremendous deal and definitely worth checking out.
Is an HMO really the best way to go? It is a difficult question. With an HMO you have very little out of pocket costs however you probably do not get to pick which doctors you get to see. With a PPO you should be able to have more of a choice but will have to put out more money. In the end it depends on what your needs might be.
When looking to purchase health insurance for yourself and your family, it is a smart idea to consider affiliating with a group. This is a great way to save money as group insurance is usually cheaper than individual insurance. When you are on staff your employer is automatically able to get group rates. If you are on your own you can find a group. Alumni associations or trade groups may let you join for insurance purposes.
If an insurance rate is too good to be true, look at customer reviews of the company to ensure you’re paying for good service. If insurance is cheap, it’s likely to be because they have a low number of staff, meaning claims could take forever to go through. You get what you pay for.
Even if you don’t personally qualify for Medicaid, apply for all of your family members in case one of them does. This can remove them from your insurance policy and reduce your premiums significantly. Remember to reapply for Medicaid yearly as your financial situation may change or the rules for Medicaid itself may be altered.
If you sign up for an insurance plan with a Health Spending Account, it will afford you lower premiums with a higher deductible. Take the money you’re saving from the lower premiums and put it into your HSA – it will grow in a tax-deferred environment, and when you turn 65 you can withdraw the money you didn’t spend and use it as you wish!
When it comes to your health insurance coverage, make sure you keep your insurance card available. Not only does this make the check-in process at the doctor’s office or hospital easier, it also can simplify things if you are in an unexpected accident and are unable to provide your information. Your insurance card includes key information such as the policy number and contact information, making it easier for health care providers to reach your carrier if needed.
Once you have a good travel health insurance policy in place, you will be able to relax and fully enjoy your vacation. Without it, you might feel overly cautious and miss some great opportunities for fear of being injured or becoming ill. While you may not need your travel health insurance policy at all, just having it in place will bring you peace of mind and may end up saving you a lot of money should the unexpected occur while you are on vacation.