No, we’re not talking about performing your own surgeries or dropping your coverage altogether. At this time of year many employers offer an “open enrollment” period wherein employees can evaluate their health insurance coverage and switch plans if necessary. Regardless of which insurance company you use, here are three “think outside the box” techniques that could help you save money on your health insurance.
Tip 1: Consider shopping for a much higher deductible than you are accustomed to. Shop for plans that have a $10,000 deductible or more. It may shock you as to how drastically lower premiums will be. Too much risk for you? We will show you a way to combat that next.
Tip 2: To offset that high deductible, consider purchasing a Critical Illness Rider, which attaches to your major medical policy. Critical Illness riders pay a cash benefit for conditions like: Cancer, Heart, Stroke, Coma, Kidney, etc. and this cash benefit can be used to pay off your entire deductible and even leave you with additional monies for other expenses, such as loss of income. Riders can be purchased to cover your deductible and you can even purchase more, up to $100,000 in cash coverage if you wish. Believe it or not, these premiums are very affordable.
Tip 3: Also to help offset risk, consider purchasing an Accident Rider to attach to your major medical policy. Like Critical Illness Riders, Accident Riders pay a cash benefit for any accident or injury such as: cuts, burns, broken bones, strained and pulled muscles, etc. This cash benefit can be used to pay your entire deductible in the event you or your family is injured. If you have children, especially ones in sports, this is a must-have rider. These premiums are even more affordable.
So what types of claims will you then need to worry about? Since health care reform passed, additional benefits have now been added so you will not have to pay out of pocket for adult and child wellness exams such as: checks-ups, immunizations, lab work, mammograms, pap tests, PSAs, EKGs, etc. They are all covered at 100% with NO deductible. Why purchase a lower deductible when it’s covered regardless? (If you already have insurance we do recommend checking with your insurance company to see when these new regulations will become effective for you.)
Additionally, under the new health care law there are no lifetime maximums: After your deductible, you are covered at 100% until infinity. There are no lifetime caps like $2 million, $3 million, etc. If you have a $20 million medical bill, your insurance must now cover it.
With a high-deductible policy you will still have to pay for such claims as office calls for a cold/flu, asthma, skin disorders (other than cancer) and other forms of illness. However, most people would rather save $300, $400, or more per month and pay the occasionally office call themselves. Another bonus, you will still be receiving your insurance company’s discounted rate for office calls and will not have to pay full price.
Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result… well, you know the rest. Thinking “outside the box” can not only save you money but also provide you with even better coverage than you had before.