If you’ve taken on the daunting task of choosing the right health insurance for your family chances are you’re in for a wild ride. The fact is trying to pick a family health care plan can be both confusing and difficult for many consumers. Although many plans have the major differences between them based on the monthly premium or health insurance rate and the restrictions they impose there are a few other minor features that should be explored.
Many health care providers will stipulate or mandate a required pre-health screening or physical before they will allow you to sign up for the plan and actually start providing health care coverage. The reasoning behind this is based on the fact that a majority of the new health care companies and providers are now positioning their coverage resources towards preventive medicine and hospital visits as opposed to treating pre-existing conditions. Other factors that will cause health care insurance plans to differ will be the rates they charge for smokers, consumers suffering from chronic or frequent illnesses and even people suffering from diabetes and other more extreme medical conditions.
One vital bit of information that someone researching to find the most suitable health insurance plan for their family should know would have to be the difference between a managed care health plan and a fee-for-service or indemnity plan. Many people prefer the indemnity plan based on the fact that it allows you the opportunity to choose the medical profession, doctor or health care specialist that you wish to use as your primary health care provider. It also eliminates the need for a referral when seeking specialized or outside treatment. Naturally, this freedom to choose your own doctor and hospital comes with a higher price in the form of a larger required deductible and the consumer paying as much as 20% of any health care that is provided.
The managed care system or plan is the most talked about plan and is discussed and advertised for quite frequently. Just in case you’re not sure what these plans are, think Health Maintenance Organization or HMO as that is really one of the more popular forms of this type of health care insurance coverage. Other plans similar in nature include the Preferred Provider Organization (PPO), and the Point-of-Service Plan (POS).
Since the HMO seems to be the most widely known it only seems fair to provide more in-depth knowledge on what it truly is and what it does for consumers. A typical HMO offers a large amount of health care benefits and a good value in health care coverage. Normally a deductible isn’t required and there is a nominal co-pay on prescriptions. This coverage plan is usually provided for a small monthly premium or fee.
The major difference between an HMO and an indemnity plan (aside from the deductible portion) is how the primary health care provider is chosen. Remember with an indemnity plan the consumer gets to choose whoever they want as their doctor. In an the consumer or individual seeking health care insurance is given a list of doctors to choose from that will become their family’s primary care physician. Also a referral system is heavily used in an HMO on the off chance that you need to seek additional medical guidance and help from a medical specialist.
Finding the most suitable family health care insurance can be extremely confusing and difficult or it can be rather simple, quick and easy. Knowing the difference between an indemnity plan and a managed care system can aid in the choosing of an adequate health care insurance plan for your family.