Making the Right Choice with Your 2019 Healthcare Plan
The mid-term election is not the only choice millions of Americans would be making this fall, as the time has come for them to choose their healthcare plans for the next year. For example, in Illinois alone, around 8 million Americans would need to make up their mind about which plan best suits their healthcare needs.
The enrollment process has both open as well as annual enrollment options for people, so they can either sign up for an annual plan or for a plan on a rolling basis. Unfortunately, unlike the mid-term election which has a set date, enrollment dates for healthcare plans vary with each one, and hence you need to be prudent enough to select your desired plan now and keep in mind its enrollment date. That way you won’t miss out on it when the time for enrollment comes.
Enrollment Dates to Remember
If you are employed in a company that provides a coverage plan to its employees, then the dates of enrollment would be decided and opened by our company sometime in between September to December for about two weeks. During that period, you are expected to make the choice about which health benefits you require in the following year. Around 175 million Americans are signed up with their employers for coverage.
A little over 60 million people are already subscribed to Medicare, and for them enrollment is on an annual basis. They may register for next year’s Medicare coverage sometime between October 15th and December 7th, which is the fixed annual timeline for enrollment in the program.
If both of these don’t apply to you, then you are probably looking forward to enrollment dates for the individual state exchange or the insurance marketplace, both of which typically open registrations between November 1st and December 15th.
Any changes you make to your current healthcare plan will come into effect from the very first day of 2019.
The Perfect Plan for You
Considering the plethora of different healthcare plans out in the market, choosing the right one to suit your individual as well as family needs becomes a very stressful endeavor. However, it is a choice which you must make, and soon enough. Here are a few tips to help you out in this selection process.
Make an In-Depth Review of All your Choices
There is more to selecting a healthcare plan than simply assessing whether you can afford the monthly premiums or not. Other costs associated with coverage include out-of-pocket costs which you must bear with every health-related treatment you seek.
The deductibles, the copays, and the coinsurance also need to match your needs. Also, make an analysis of all potential health issues you may have to face in the coming year, such as the delivery of a child or an expected surgical procedure, so that you choose a plan accordingly.
The Goal is to Avoid Financial Surprises
Subscribing to a plan is only the first step in ensuring a stress-free management of your healthcare in the upcoming year. The next step is to verify whether the doctors you want to visit are part of the provider’s network, as that would help you significantly lower your medical bills.
Of course, instances may occur when you must visit doctors outside the provider’s network, and for those occasions its best you make an assessment of how much that would cost you with your plan of choice.
The other important aspect you must ascertain at this stage is whether your coverage plan will cover medications or not. Even if you plan on continuing with your current plan, it’s important to verify once more whether coverage for medications is being provided in 2019 as well, because there is a chance that your current plan has changed some of its provisions.
Some Programs Offer Savings
Why should you have to pay the same premium as someone who is living a much unhealthier lifestyle compared to you? You shouldn’t, and some programs do recognize this fact by incentivizing people to live a healthier lifestyle.
So, if you are planning on joining a gym, or going on a walk every morning, then you should look for a plan that will recognize those efforts and make your health insurance a bit cheaper for you.
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