Health Insurance Quotes in Haines, AK
Compare Health Insurance Plans in Haines, AK
What is health insurance? Health insurance covers a person's medical expenses, including everything from surgery to other health related costs. In the United States, a number of different healthcare coverage options are available. Some options charge the individual an out of pocket expense, later reimbursing them through the insurance company, while others involve the insurance company paying the provider directly. With MyRatePlan, one can compare health insurance rates and coverage in the Haines, AK area, and even get a free quote online.
Most health insurance in Haines, AK comes from either employers or private companies. Senior citizens also have access to Medicare, and low-income individuals are covered through Medicaid. Medicare and Medicaid offer health insurance coverage at a reduced rate, making it more affordable than private plans.
Private insurance plans offer many different levels of coverage. Less expensive plans might only cover catastrophic emergencies, providing people with minimal coverage. More expensive plans, by contrast, often offer complete health coverage. When seeking a healthcare plan, individuals must anticipate their future healthcare needs and choose their plan accordingly.
Evaluating Health Insurance Plans in Haines, AK
One of the primary challenges in deciding what health insurance policy to select is determining the amount of coverage needed for the upcoming year, because healthcare needs can be unpredictable. The most effective approach is typically to consider past healthcare needs, and then use those for an educated guess as to future needs. A consumer who is young, in good health, and doesn't need to make frequent visits to doctors or specialists, will likely be fine with the coverage provided by a low-cost policy. Those with chronic diseases and those who need to visit the doctor frequently for issues will be better off with health insurance that has more extensive coverage.
If an individual only wants the basics, the cheapest health insurance plans in Haines, AK are catastrophic only insurance. These policies work well for those who rarely see the doctor and just need coverage for emergencies. For people who travel often or engage in risky activities, it's important to find a plan that covers more frequent trips to the doctor and even ER visits.
Of course, more coverage will also usually come at a cost in the form of a higher monthly premium. Consumers in Haines, AK who pay more get policies that pay more for their healthcare needs. Every consumer needs to look at their lifestyle, background and health history to find the most affordable option that covers their needs. The best way to go is to start with the basics and add more coverage if it's needed and fits the budget.
Different Types of Health Insurance Coverage in Haines, AK
You have several different options as far as types of healthcare plans available in Haines, AK. While the levels of coverage offered may be similar, the flexibility and convenience of these plans vary greatly. Some choices include a PPO, an HMO, an HSA, a POS, an FSA, an HRA, and an MSA. As confusing as this may seem, it really is important to understand the basic differences before you select a plan.
HMO, which stands for Health Maintenance Organization, provides health services for a fixed annual fee. This kind of medical insurance organization provides or arranges managed care, serving as a liaison with healthcare providers on a prepaid basis. When you have an HMO plan, you must choose a Primary Care Physician (PCP) to be the gatekeeper for all of your health-related needs. You choose the PCP from a network of local healthcare providers in Haines, AK who will then refer you to specialists or hospitals in the network when necessary. So if you need to see a specialist, you have to go to your primary care physician first and obtain a referral to a specialist if your primary physician deems it necessary for you to visit one. Some doctors do not accept HMO insurance plans, so although HMOs typically have lower premiums than other plans, there may be a limited network of doctors available to the insured. The best things about HMO plans are the reasonable out-of-pocket costs and the lack of deductibles.
PPO stands for Preferred Provider Organization, and this type of plan allows for more flexibility and more choices thanks to a large network of healthcare providers that participate. Individuals insured under a PPO plan can choose any primary care doctor within the network and see a specialist or go to a hospital without the need for a referral. This applies even when you travel. However, your out-of-pocket costs are lower when you go with an in-network healthcare provider. With that being said, you can still get partial financial assistance for out-of-network costs. With PPOs you typically have deductibles, co-payments, and yearly spend limits for out-of-pocket costs.
A Point of Service (POS) plan combines elements of HMOs and PPOs by offering a decent-sized network of options to choose your primary care physician from. As long as you stay within the network, you don't pay any deductibles and copayments are low. However, seeing a doctor that is out-of-network makes copayments and deductibles high. You can also consider some non-traditional approaches to health insurance in Haines, AK. These options include a Health Savings Account (HSA), a Medical Savings Account (MSA), a Health Flexible Spending Arrangement (FSA), and a Health Reimbursement Account (HRA). These plans come with a lot of flexibility and operate on the general idea of you or your employer setting money aside in a tax-exempt savings account for all medical-related expenses. This money can be used for doctor's visits, prescriptions, and surgical treatments. In some cases, this money that has been set aside can even be used for over-the-counter medication.
Understanding The Cost of Health Insurance in Haines, AK
One aspect of health insurance that makes the selection process confusing is the terminology. People are bombarded with terms that they don't understand and are not accustomed to. Here are some of the more common terms people can expect to hear when discussing health insurance and what they mean.
Deductibles are not considered out of pocket expenses. Out of pocket expenses refers to how much the insured has to spend before their insurance pays 100 percent of the medical expense. Deductibles refer to the annual financial commitment of the insured before their insurance starts paying. Both of these expenses will typically start over each year. For example, if an insured person has a deductible of $5,000 and they spend $1,400 throughout the year, that $1,400 will not count towards the new year's deductibles. However, some plans in Haines, AK will let the insured roll the unused amount, in this case, $3,600, and apply it towards the first quarter of the new year.
The amount of money an insured person has to pay each month is called the premium. It doesn't matter if the insured person uses their insurance throughout the year or not, these funds are not returned to the insured. Co-insurance, or copayments, are not applied to deductibles and refers to what portion of expenses the insured is responsible for when they receive medical services. The insurance company will pay the remainder of the amount after the insured has paid their co-payment so long as the services received are covered by the healthcare plan.
Some insurance companies in Haines, AK will also set lifetime maximum limits. This is the total amount the insurance company will pay for an individual's healthcare. If this limit is reached, the insurance company will not pay for any further medical claims.
A person's employment status also plays a significant part in what insurance plans are available to them. Larger companies will typically enable employees to enroll in their group health insurance. Group health insurance plans are usually more affordable than individual healthcare.
Medicare is available for non-working senior citizens in Haines, AK and they may be able to receive government financial assistance. Low-income individuals can also apply to receive government assistance called Medicaid. For those that are unemployed or self-employed, they have the option of purchasing individual healthcare through private companies.
For people that already have a doctor and are in the process of switching health insurance providers, it is important that they first check with their doctor before selecting a specific type of insurance. Some doctors will not accept all types of healthcare coverage. Additionally, the insured should also consult with their insurance provider if they are unsure or have questions about their coverage.
Get a Free Online Health Insurance Quote in Haines, AK
Shopping for health insurance may feel overwhelming, but having coverage is a liberating sensation. Knowing you can protect your health is one of the best gifts you can give yourself and your family. So sit down, take a deep breath, and let MyRatePlan help you navigate your Haines, AK healthcare choices. Just give them your zip code and let them do the rest.