The dilemma of what type of health insurance to get is a common occurrence especially for those who have little knowledge about how insurance works. Hence, let us take a brief look at the available options you have if you are planning to enroll this year.

Image source: The Sunday Mail

If you have not enrolled in a health insurance, you may check the required qualifications for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP), which gives consideration to certain life events such as losing health coverage, moving and getting married. If you do, you can enroll in a health plan usually 60 days after the event. If you fail to do so, you have to wait for the next Open Enrollment Period to apply. Alternatively, you can enroll in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Plan (CHIP) any time of year.

On the other hand, plans that are job-based must provide an SEP of at least 30 days. For their part, companies are always looking for effective health insurance plans that would benefit both the organization and the employees.

Some of the most common options available for finding out the best health insurance there is are:

  1. Fee for Service: Generally the most expensive plans in terms of premiums, copayments and coinsurance because of its provision for wide network of doctors and hospitals
  1. Managed Care: Health insurers can control costs by managing services
  • Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) – Has contracts with a network of preferred providers that you can choose from
  • Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) – Calls for the selection of a primary care physician
  • Point-of-Service Plan (POS): A hybrid of HMO and PPO plans

Additionally, the following may fall under Managed Care:

  • HSA-qualified plans – typically PPO plans that are used with Health Savings Accounts (HSAs)
  • Exclusive Provider Organization (EPO) – Can also be considered as a hybrid of a PPO and HOM; You do not need a referral from a primary care physician
  1. High-Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs): Plans with higher deductibles than traditional insurance plans. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) defines an HDHP as any plan with a deductible of at least $1,300 for an individual or $2,600 for a family.

Getting a health insurance can sometimes be a complicated process. If you need assistance and expert advice, contact an insurance expert so they can help assist in making sure that the enrollment process is as simple as possible.

By Dez Duran-Lamanilao