The best way to secure yourself against unexpected illnesses or accidents is through health insurance. Health insurance is a type of insurance that will pay for a share of your health expenses such as surgical and medical costs whenever you visit a doctor. There is a wide variety of health insurance plans available. In some plans, you may be required to pay for medical costs and get reimbursed later while in other plans your insurer will pay for your costs directly. With Wirefly, you can simply compare different health insurance packages in Baltimore, MD, and also receive free online quotes.
There are four ways of getting health insurance in Baltimore, MD. First, you can be insured under your employer. Alternatively, you can be covered through private insurance. Senior citizens are usually covered through Medicare while low income earners use Medicaid. Medicare and Medicaid are far much cheaper than private insurance.
Health insurance comes with different levels of coverage. The cheaper packages are geared towards catastrophic events while the more expensive packages provide full coverage. Before choosing a plan, it is advisable to estimate your health care needs.
Comparing Health Insurance Policies in Baltimore, MD
For many individuals, one of the most difficult things about choosing a health insurance plan is not knowing what the future holds. You could end up with an insurance policy that doesn’t fulfill your healthcare needs. To ensure the best results, you should base your decision on your past medical history.
If you are a relatively healthy person, you could save money by choosing an affordable health insurance plan that only pays for the basics such as an annual check-up or the occasional sick visit. However, if you have a serious health condition that requires you to see your doctor on a routine basis, a health insurance company that offers various coverage options would be a better choice.
An affordable option for individuals in Baltimore, MD who only want health insurance for emergency situations would be catastrophic-only insurance. This is a good choice for those who rarely visit their doctor and only want health insurance if they are involved in a severe accident or have a sudden health issue that requires immediate medical assistance.
One thing to remember when comparing health insurance plans in Baltimore, MD is if you have higher monthly premiums, you will also have better overall coverage. This is something to consider if you currently have a health condition such as heart disease or diabetes, and need quality, ongoing coverage.
Your lifestyle is another factor to think about when enrolling in a new health insurance plan. If you are an avid traveler, enjoy adventurous activities such as skydiving or mountain climbing, you will want to find an insurance plan that will cover visits to the emergency room for accidents or injuries.
The Various Types of Health Insurance Coverage Plans in Baltimore, MD
The most common health insurance plans that are offered in Baltimore, MD include HMO, PPO, POS, HSA, HRA, and MSA. Although at first, these may seem confusing, it is important to carefully decide what coverage you need to best cover your yearly medical expenses.
Health Maintenance Organization, or HMO, requires one health care physician to cover all of your healthcare needs. So, if you plan on seeing certain specialists, you have to first get permission from your primary care physician. Although this is one of the cheapest plans to sign on to, you have less provider flexibility since you can only have one physician.
PPO, or Preferred Provider Organization, offers a much wider network of health care providers. You can personally choose any physician within the network to treat you without any need for a referral or permission. PPO’s are one of the best types of plans to choose due to the flexibility and they typically accept, co-payments, deductibles, and yearly medical expense limits.
A POS plan, or point of service plan, combines the benefits of both PPO plans and HMO plans. They offer a large network of health care providers in Baltimore, MD that you can choose from to find a primary care provider. If you stay in the network of doctors, you are not required to pay any deductibles and your copayments will be low. Conversely, if you need to visit a doctor that is not in your network, your deductibles and copayments will be a lot higher.
As far as non-traditional options, there are a few different sorts available in Baltimore, MD. Some of your choices include a Health Reimbursement Account (HRA), a Medical Savings Account (MSA), a Health Savings Account (HSA), or a Health Flexible Spending Account (FSA). With all of these accounts, either you or your employer will put money aside for only medical expenses. These accounts are all tax-exempt and similar to savings accounts. The money in these accounts can be used to pay for doctor’s trips, prescriptions, surgical procedures, some over the counter medications, and other regular medical expenses. There is a lot of flexibility associated with this sort of plan. You can decide how you spend your money and your money may even roll over into the next year.
Basic Breakdown of Health Insurance Costs in Baltimore, MD
Health insurance premiums are the amount paid each month to receive coverage. The premiums paid are not returned to you, even if the subscribers do not use the insurance benefits. Deductibles are additional money that must be paid to healthcare providers for services received where the health insurance company doesn’t cover the whole cost of the procedure.
Out of pocket costs are treated differently than deductibles. Health insurance providers require a minimum amount to be paid by a subscriber before they will begin to pay for services; this is what’s referred to as the deductible. Out of pocket refers to the amount of money that must be paid by the subscriber before their health insurance will pay 100% of medical costs incurred. Both the out of pocket and deductible amounts paid reset each time the plan renews, which is generally annually, and are not eligible to roll over to the next year. While this is a general rule, there are some health insurance plans in Baltimore, MD that allow an exception for deductibles paid in the previous year may count toward the deductible amount only for the first quarter of the new plan year.
Health insurance co-pays and co-insurance refers to the subscriber’s responsibility to pay certain amounts for a medical visit or for a given procedure. As an example, if the PCP co-pay on a health insurance plan is $25, then the subscriber can expect to pay $25 each time he or she visits their primary care physician. The insurance company will cover the balance of what the physician charges for a visit and the co-pay amount.
Most health insurance companies that provide coverage in Baltimore, MD will have an allowance for a maximum lifetime benefit under their plan. This amount is usually quite large and doesn’t come into play for most subscribers and is meant to protect the insurance company from being responsible exorbitant medical expenses. Once this maximum amount is met, the insurance provider will not make any further payments for the subscriber.
In today’s market, the subscriber’s employment status determines which health insurance plans may be available to purchase. Large employers will generally provide health insurance as a benefit of employment. The employer shares part of the premium costs making this method of access to insurance more affordable than most. Employees are not required to participate in the group plan sponsored by their employers, but it benefits them in most cases.
Self-employed individuals, or those who do not work, are able to buy health insurance in the private market. Seniors, low-income families, and unemployed individuals may be able to apply for and receive premium assistance through the government, usually under a service called Medicaid.
If a subscriber already has a family physician or a specialist they see for treatment in the Baltimore, MD area, it’s important to check with a potential new insurance provider to ensure the physician is in the plan’s network. The subscriber also must notify their physicians when coverage changes so the proper health insurance company can be billed for expenses.
Get a Health Insurance Quote in Baltimore, MD Today
Buying health insurance is one of the best ways to care for yourself and your family. There are many different factors that may affect insurance plan coverage and rates. Wirefly simplifies the task of comparing health insurance plans and getting health insurance quotes in Baltimore, MD. Just enter your ZIP code to start.
While it is possible to save money on health insurance in several ways, do not pass on the coverage you may need. For instance, if you plan to have a child in the future, choose a plan that includes maternity coverage to avoid the trouble of obtaining coverage later. Make sure that you do not eliminate coverage you need to save money on premiums. Although insurance premiums are not cheap, out-of-pocket costs for future medical care are potentially many times more costly. Let Wirefly help you find the best insurance plan in Baltimore, MD. Save on health insurance by getting free quotes now.
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