Health Insurance Information
The Basics of Health Insurance
Health insurance is a type of insurance coverage that can covers the cost of an insured individual’s medical and surgical expenses. Depending on the type of health insurance coverage, either the insured pays costs out-of-pocket and is then reimbursed, or the insurer makes payments directly to the provider. In health insurance terminology, the “insurer” is the insurance company. The “provider” is a clinic, hospital, doctor, laboratory, health care practitioner, or pharmacy. The “insured” is the owner of the health insurance policy; the person with the health insurance coverage.
Why is Health Insurance Important?
Having proper health insurance in place is critical to help cover the cost of medical expenses, and protect your financial future. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF), more than a quarter of U.S. adults struggle to pay their medical bills. This includes folks who have insurance, whether independently or through an employer. In fact, medical debt is the No. 1 source of personal bankruptcy filings in the U.S., and in 2014, an estimated 40% of Americans racked up debt resulting from a medical issue. Having proper health insurance can protect you in the following areas:
- Health insurance covers essential health benefits critical to maintaining your health and treating illness and accidents.
- Health insurance can protect you from unexpected, high medical costs.
- New ACA rules help you get free preventative care like vaccines, screenings, and check ups.
- Having a qualified health insurance plan in place can help you avoid costly tax penalties.
What to Discuss With Your Agent
Before buying a Health Insurance Policy, be prepared to discuss the following with your agent:
- The services that the policy covers, and the specific limits for each kind of coverage.
- What network will be best for you based on your geographical area and existing doctors?
- How much is the premium and how often do I need to pay it?
- What is your financial situation, and what kind of Deductibles and co-pays will you be comfortable with?
- What are the ACA penalties if you decide to go without health insurance?