Buying Individual Health Insurance? Ask These Questions

Written by Mike

There is no denying the benefits of group health insurance. As part of a group plan, you will generally receive better coverage at a lower price. Unfortunately, this is not always an option. Maybe your employer does not offer this benefit. Maybe you are self-employed. Maybe you are unemployed.

It does not matter why you are unable to take advantage of group health insurance. What does matter is that you find a way to buy insurance coverage that you can by happy with.

Buying individual health insurance is easier said than done. Not only do you need to compare multiple policies and companies, but you must find a way to work this into your budget.

Speaking of budget, pricing is probably the most confusing aspect of an individual health plan. In fact, you may be so confused by the cost that you are tempted to go on without coverage. Despite the temptation, you know that you need to purchase some level of insurance – even if it is not the best policy.

Questions to Ask

Knowledge is power when buying individual health insurance. The more you know the better off you are going to be. As you ask yourself more and more questions, you will find that you have a better understanding of the industry, yourself, and what is available to you.

Here are the types of questions that you should ask and answer when shopping for a policy:

  • Are my doctors in the plan’s network? If you don’t feel like changing providers, this is one of the most important questions you can ask. You want to find a plan that offers a large variety of in network doctors, hospitals, and specialists. This may not sound important when you are in good health, but if something goes wrong you will be glad that you did this.
  • How much will I pay every month for coverage? You are not going to know the answer to this question until you complete an application. There are many factors that go into determining your premium, ranging from your age to your current level of health to your history. If you compare several quotes, you will find it easier to decide on one a policy that is affordable.
  • Is prescription drug coverage included? It is easy to think that every health plan includes this coverage, however, this is not the case. You need to double check on this before making a purchase. If you don’t have prescription drug coverage, you may be surprised at how much you end up spending.
  • Is there any way to save money on the premium? If you find that you don’t qualify for the lowest rate, there are a few things you can do to help yourself save. First and foremost, opt for a policy with a high deductible. This means more money out of your pocket, but if something major happens you know that you will be covered. This is the perfect solution for younger people who don’t have any health concerns.
  • What are the co-payments and co-insurance? You need to know how much money you will pay for every doctor, specialist, and hospital visit. Along with this, after you meet your deductible you may have co-insurance that must be paid until you reach your out of pocket maximum.

Buying individual health insurance can be a confusing time. By answering these questions, you will have a better understanding of what you are up against and how to purchase a plan that offers the coverage you need.