Let Health Insurance Basics Guide Your Decision to Select a Policy

In the past few years, no formerly benign concept has become as politically charged as that of health insurance. The merits of the Affordable Care Act, the difficulties with the program’s rollout, and other ideas of how to reform the American healthcare system continue to be widely debated on cable news, talk radio, and even Facebook. It is so easy to get caught up in the debate surrounding health insurance that young people can lose sight of basic information that might be helpful in choosing a plan that works for you. If your employer does not provide health insurance and you choose to purchase it for yourself, there are some basic core concepts of which you should be aware. First, the two basic types of health insurance are fee for service insurance, and managed care. In a fee for service plan, the patient is free to see the doctor of his or her choice, and either the patient or the provider will file a claim for payment with the insurance company.These types of plans presume that the provider will be paid for services rendered. A common criticism of fee for service plans is that they incentivize quantity of care, rather than quality. A second type of insurance is the managed care plan. Health maintenance organizations, preferred partner organizations, and point of service plans are all types of managed care plans.These types of plans typically provide incentives for selecting healthcare providers with the plan. Managed care plans usually emphasize preventive care, such as screening exams. Occasionally, managed care plans require patients to see a primary care physician first before being referred to a specialist. Consulting with an insurance agent and requesting a quote can help you choose between these two types of insurance to find a plan that meets your needs.
Something to take into consideration when choosing a policy is your overall health. Fortunately, young people by and large have fewer chronic health problems than their older counterparts. For many, a high deductible plan with a health savings account can be a good option. In a high deductible plan, you are responsible for your medical expenses until you meet your deductible. When your deductible is met, insurance takes over your bills. Your deductible might be met incrementally, through payments here and there to providers for routine checkups and an occasional prescription medication. Alternatively, the deductible could be met rather quickly in the event of an unexpected accident or illness.The advantage of a health savings account is that you can defer some of your income into a savings account and use it to pay medical qualified medical expenses, including doctor’s visits and prescription medications, toward your deductible. Money invested in a health savings account is not subject to federal income tax.

Selecting a health insurance plan is a personal decision. Your relative health, income and tax liabilities should be considered in choosing a proper plan. An insurance agent can help make sense of the new laws and help find a plan that is right for you and your family.

Signs of a Quality Insurance Company

The insurance company you choose to protect you from loss in the event of an accident or situation needs to be a trustworthy one. Know what to look for as you analyze and examine different companies and policies to ensure that you choose the right coverage.
Positive Ratings

Rely on the assessments of the rating companies, whose purpose is to analyze the quality and financial wellbeing of insurance companies. Check the rating of any insurance company you are considering. As you check ratings, compare them to learn which business has the highest rating. Higher ratings have a direct correlation with the solidity of the business and the services provided. Higher ratings also indicate entities with more solid financial standings for paying out claims.

Business Longevity

Examine the length of time a business has been operating to get an indication of the quality and reliability of its services. A newly formed entity may not be able to offer customers the same reliability and performance as businesses that have been around for many years. A recent purchase and transfer between insurers could indicate that the new owner is undertaking positive growth.

Customer Service

The services provided to customers by an insurance company will be an important indicator of quality. Optimally, customers should be able to reach representatives in a variety of ways, such as by phone, online chat, and email. The response times to customer queries should be relatively short to ensure that all questions and concerns receive a speedy resolution. Customers should also be able to reach a representative around the clock and on weekends and holidays for emergencies.

Coverage Policies

The policies provided should meet your needs, with cost effective premiums, affordable deductibles, and terms that meet your coverage needs. Compare policy terms between different corporations to ensure that you choose the policy that fits your budget and needs. Explore the claim-paying process to find out how the business investigates claims and the typical time period for payment on a claim. Find out the rate of claim refusal, also, so you know the average pay out statistics for the insurance company.

Reviews and Complaints

Learn about reviews and complaints recorded by other customers to find out potentially positive and negative information about the insurer. Find positive and negative reviews on websites that allow consumers to record their experiences for other consumers to read. These reviews may provide surprising information about an entity that could lead you to decide not to choose them as your insurer. You might also learn positive information about the way a business takes care of its customers. Optimally, the corporation you choose should have very few or even no complaints lodged against it from other customers.

Once you gather extensive information about a company, you will have the data you need to choose a quality business for your coverage needs. This will enable you to put your trust and confidence in this corporation, knowing that it will assist you financially if you need it.