In recent years, healthcare insurance has become mandatory coverage. Verified through federal tax records, individuals must purchase insurance or pay a penalty for not doing so. In many cases, the price of the penalty is less than the cost of health insurance itself. This has left many Americans without the essential health insurance that is necessary to maintain good health and alleviate disease occurrence and advancement.
Despite the increasing cost of healthcare and insurance, it is still beneficial to secure and maintain medical insurance. Even if the upfront cost of paying for health insurance is more than the associated penalty fee, additional benefits are included within the realm of being insured medically. The value of medical insurance cannot be based on price alone.
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Services such as preventive care, urgent care, sick visits, and emergency services are general types of fees that are covered by medical insurance. Without adequate coverage, patients may find themselves paying for the fees that are associated with these services completely out of pocket.
Different levels of medical insurance are available at different price points. Plans that allow broader coverage with fewer network restrictions often come in at a higher price point than plans that are severely restrictive in terms of provider choices and covered services. In addition, some plans offer coverage for routine visits and sick care, while other plans only provide coverage in extenuating circumstances that exceed a large deductible.
Maintaining Oral Health
Dental care plays a key role in overall health. Many symptoms that arise within the gums and teeth can affect the entire body. Obtaining adequate dental care is crucial, but it can be hard on the pocketbook without essential dental insurance. Individuals without dental care, lack access to preventive dental services. As a result, the teeth can decay, impose pain, and lead to additional health issues.
As we get older, the first thing to truly go from us is our teeth. Yes, our vision might be a bit blurry and progress further. Maybe our knees able to run as much in our old age. But our teeth will fall out. It happens to everybody. So why is it that obtaining dental insurance for senior citizens is the last thing one talks about?
Oral care is among the most important means of preventing a host of disorders, especially heart disorders. There’s a whole group of bacteria called HÁČEK bacteria that are among the leading causes of subacute bacterial endocarditis. And when you’re older in age, you should not be taking any chances. Insurance and health have a synergistic relationship. That relationship is strengthened by one’s willingness to invest in preventive measures in all aspects of health. In proving so, your premiums get lower, and your likelihood of coverage in other kinds of insurance goes up.
This is why dental coverage can never be more crucial. It’s all part of the holistic approach to coverage and conscious health efforts on the part of the individual. That’s a massively big deal, especially in relation to insurance matters. Thankfully, as seen on MedicareWire.com, there are a lot of new insurance plans today that cover dental. All you need to do is compare and weigh your options according to your budget and desired coverage, which can be easily done today online. Not only will these plans help your teeth or veneers stay nice and white, but will give you peace of mind as you are sure that only experts do all the cleaning to prevent any sort of buildup and bacterial accumulation that may cause complications down the line.
Limit the Out of Pocket Expenses for Routine Visits
General visits to a physician’s office for a checkup can cost hundreds of dollars. Blood work, lab tests, immunizations, and office fees add up quickly. Without healthcare insurance, the out of pocket cost for these services is calculated on a flat basis. Typically, some physicians may provide a discount to uninsured patients if they pay the entire amount upfront. Yet, chances are if a patient can’t afford health insurance, they also can’t afford a large doctor’s bill. For patients that have multiple individuals in their family, these costs can add up. Fees for infants and elderly patients are specifically disheartening, as these classes of patients usually require more frequent and intensive care.
Purchasing healthcare insurance can help alleviate some, if not all, of these fees. Recent laws require insurers to pay for certain aspects of preventive care visits. This regulation is based on the reduction of expenses for more serious illnesses and conditions if they can be detected and treated through preventive care efforts. Healthcare insurers provide these services on a periodic basis, but it is up to the patient to decide if they wish to partake in this offer. Basic physician visits aren’t forced, but they can provide immeasurable benefits to both parties.
Reduce the Cost of Mandatory Medication
One unique facet of healthcare insurance is its association with prescription drug coverage. Oftentimes, the cost of prescription drug coverage is included in health insurance premiums, yet prescription drug coverage is serviced by a different entity. Other times, prescription drug insurance is separate, which can initiate a deficit between healthcare maintenance and prescription drug coverage.
Many types of prescription insurance also cover certain tiers of medication at a reduced cost or for no fee at all. Of course, these medications would be valued at full price without applicable healthcare insurance. The key to obtaining prescription medications at a lower cost with prescription drug coverage is to obtain drugs through an entity that is a contract, or “in-network,” for the insurer. A list of in-network pharmacies can typically be found in the material circulated by the insurer, online, or by inquiring at the specific pharmacy.
Ensure Coverage is Adequate for Sick Visits
When patients don’t feel well, the goal is to discover the cause of the illness and correct it with procedures or medication. Thus, sick visits to the doctor often cost more than preventive visits. This type of care consists of testing, lab work, diagnostics, imaging, and prescriptions. More than just a simple exam, a sick visit may be comprised of multiple, time-consuming elements.
The standard response to a sick visit is that the physician is booked for the day, especially during times of rampant illness. In these cases, care must be sought out at a different facility that may or may not be “in-network” for health insurance. If no health insurance is available, facilities like urgent care or critical care may impose larger fees than a primary care physician would incur.
Securing Major Medical and Emergency Care Coverage
Emergency services or major illness can cause debilitating financial damage. The cost of visiting an Emergency Room can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars, as can the need for surgical and intensive care. Paying for emergency care can be devastating for an individual without healthcare insurance coverage. It can greatly affect patients who do have healthcare insurance, as well.
The fear of an expensive emergency care visit is enough for even individuals without insurance to purchase some form of major medical coverage. While this type of insurance doesn’t do much for routine visits or minor injury/illness, it will kick in after a hefty deductible has been met. Essentially, this deductible would seem insufficient for simple services, yet in the event of an extended emergency, this type of insurance could mean the difference between long-term financial devastation and short-lived financial hardship.
Secure Coverage for Rehabilitation Services
Outside of emergency services and major medical care lies the road to recovery. Transitioning between inpatient care and home life can be a daunting task. Rehabilitative services can be the answer to care at the remedial time.
For patients without insurance, rehabilitative care would be nearly impossible. Charges are incurred daily, and most facilities won’t even provide care without a contract for payment from the insurance company beforehand. Some facilities may provide financial assistance, but it is usually on a limited basis for a specified period.
Individuals with health insurance generally have some type of associated coverage of rehabilitation services. Physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy are the most common types of supplementary care that are required. Health insurance may partially cover the costs of rehabilitation services at certain facilities under specific requirements. These may include restrictions by diagnosis codes, daily fee limitations, or the necessity of care.
However, any coverage is better than nothing at all. Options for this type of coverage are available to view online on websites. Comparing policies online can help patients make the best decision based on the outlined coverage choices that would affect them the most.
Avoid Unnecessary Penalty Fees
As previously discussed, recent laws associated with the Affordable Health Act require Americans to either purchase health insurance or pay a penalty fee. Proof of insurance is required in the form of a federal tax form that may be required as proof in annual tax filings. The penalty for not having health insurance is assessed on a per-person basis, so an entire family who does not purchase health insurance may experience some exhaustive monetary penalties.
Simply purchasing health insurance may not be enough to avoid these penalty fees. A certain coverage level must be met in order to plan to be considered as providing “qualifying” coverage. Many of these plans are marked within the healthcare marketplace. but asking a professional about the requirements for qualifying plans is helpful, too.
Taking Care of Mental Health
An often-overlooked aspect of healthcare is the field of mental health services. Awareness of mental health concerns and treatment has become more mainstream over the past few years. Acceptance of behavioral conditions and substance abuse concerns are more common. Therefore, health insurance has evolved to meet the needs of these growing concerns.
Most health insurance plans cover counseling appointments, psychotherapy services, and behavioral health treatment. Mental health, substance abuse, and behavioral health affairs are realistic, present issues.
Individuals who lack a health insurance plan required to cover these services are at a serious disadvantage. Failure to receive care for these issues can lead to intensified symptoms, increased episodes, and corresponding health conditions.
Supporting Eyesight with Vision Insurance
Along with other supplementary coverage options, vision insurance doesn’t come free. It is generally an add-on feature to the health insurance provided. Vision insurance provides limited coverage for eye exams, contacts/glasses, and limited vision disorders. More intensive vision conditions will fall under health insurance, which is why it is important to carry both types of coverage.
Those who forgo vision insurance are at risk for not receiving essential vision care and vision aids, such as contacts and/or glasses. Though periodic free health screenings and clinics may provide some form of care, these resources are limited and should not be relied upon. Many pediatricians and primary care physicians include vision exams in their annual exam setup. However, these vision exams are often not as extensive as one that a patient might receive from their optometrist. In addition, if any vision discrepancies are found, patients are typically referred to their optometrist or ophthalmologist due to their specialized knowledge in vision conditions.
Vision is the key to independence. Without eyesight, patients are unable to function without assistance. Thus, vision insurance is a very important type of coverage that should be a top priority.
Filling in Coverage Gaps
Despite the adherence to federal laws by partaking in health insurance, some gaps can exist in coverage between health plans. While this is prevalent in Medicare, it can happen any time there is more than one insurance plan that responds or there is a restriction that is likely to apply prior to the end of the year.
Purchasing specific insurance to address this coverage gap is an option. The most common type of insurance for this purpose is referred to as Medigap, which supplements the underlying Medicare policy. This option is perfect for those who might find themselves lacking in coverage under their current health insurance policy.
Learn more about Medigap and compare Medicare Supplement plans on Health.com’s review of the best medicare supplement companies.
Experiencing Better Health Care Outcomes
Statistically, uninsured individuals have less access to healthcare in a less timely manner in comparison to their insured counterparts. Consequently, the uninsured population has worse health care outcomes, and refraining from health care insurance is a fiscal burden for these individuals and their families. While safety-net care provided by hospitals and clinics can help to alleviate a portion of this financial burden, it is not an adequate substitute for health insurance.
Perhaps that greatest advantage of acquiring medical insurance is possessing the ability to obtain adequate care at the appropriate time to avoid restricted, expensive emergency care in a time of uncertainty. Health is an individual’s most precious possession. Investing in healthcare insurance is one of the best preventive measures to avoid debilitating illness.
Protect Yourself and Your Family by Acquiring Medical Insurance
In a split second, anyone can find themselves amidst a medical emergency. A trip to the emergency room is mentally taxing, financially depleting, and physically exhausting. Make the situation just a little easier on yourself and the ones you love by investing in medical insurance before it’s too late.
Every aspect of insurance coverage doesn’t have to be completed at once. If money is tight, do what you can afford. Additional coverage can be added at a later time. Just start somewhere. Several small steps will produce large results. Don’t pay the ultimate penalty of being caught without adequate medical insurance in a time of distraught. Prepare yourself and your family today.
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