Do I really need health insurance?
It’s not a secret to anyone that health insurance in the US is incredibly expensive. Sure, a lot of employers provide health insurance to their employees as a part of the benefits package, but there are millions of Americans who are uninsured because they are unemployed, self-employed or because their employer doesn’t provide sufficient health insurance coverage. Paying for your health insurance entirely on your own can cost hundreds and even thousands of dollars a month and you may be tempted to choose the alternative and take your chances and go without health insurance completely. This, however, is not a good idea even if you don’t have any health issues, as a visit to the emergency room can cost you over 1,500 dollars, a specialist consultation can easily cost 300+ dollars, and a surgery for a broken bone can cost over 20,000 dollars. So no matter what your financial situation is like, you should do your best to find affordable health insurance.
How to get cheap health insurance?
While finding affordable health insurance is not an easy task, there are a few things you can do to maximize your chances of finding a cheap health insurance plan that works for you and your family.
Consider different options when shopping for inexpensive health insurance
Did you know that your state’s health insurance marketplace website is not the only place you can buy health insurance? Sure, these websites are convenient and offer a variety of health insurance options, but there are other ways to buy health insurance that can potentially save you hundreds of dollars every month. For instance, you can visit the websites of health insurance companies directly to review available plans, as the selection there is usually much larger than on state marketplace websites. Additionally, you can contact a health insurance agent who can help you find the best plan for your needs and budget - choose an independent agent if you want to review plans from different companies or go with a captive agent if you have an insurance company in mind and just need help finding the best plan.
Find out if you’re eligible for Medicare and other programs
As you may already know, there are several government-funded health insurance programs that provide affordable health insurance for certain groups of people. These programs include Medicare, which is suitable for people older than 65, Medicaid, which is designed for low-income individuals, and CHIP, or Children’s Health Insurance Program, which is suitable for children and sometimes their families who don’t have access to health insurance but don’t qualify for Medicaid.
Find out if you can stay on your parents’ health insurance plan
If you’re younger than 26 years old, one of the best ways for you to access affordable health insurance is to ask your parents to keep you on their plan until you turn 26. You can offer them to pay back the difference, but even if you’ll be paying for your part of the monthly premium, it’s one of the best options for getting cheap health insurance. Just make sure that there are in-network providers in the area where you live, as you wan to avoid paying more for out-of-network care.