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Health Insurance: How to Make a Wise Choice

Health Insurance: How to Make a Wise Choice

 Health Insurance: How to Make a Wise Choice

In today's world of expense and inflation, finding the right health insurance plan can mean the difference between physical prosperity and financial ruin. But with all the insurance companies out there claiming to have the best policies at the best prices, how can you sort through all the hype and find the coverage you need to get--and stay--healthy?

We all need health insurance...and you know your own needs better than anyone. So when insurance salesmen start hunting you down, barraging you with phone calls and filling your mailbox with marketing brochures, don't give in and buy the first health insurance policy you're offered. Do your homework ahead of time so you'll be well informed and able to choose the health insurance plan that fits you best.

To sort through all the offerings and find something you can live with, give these important issues careful consideration when searching for a personalized health insurance plan.


Just knowing your health insurance company is there when you need it can be a priceless assurance. While some companies work hard to serve your needs, others may take your money and treat you impersonally.

If you ever have to face a long-term illness, hospitalization or specialized treatment, worrying about your health insurance coverage is the last thing you'll want to do. So look now for a provider offering you a wide variety of health insurance services.

Analyze the coverage offered for medications and special equipment, experimental treatments, emergency care and rehabilitation. Find out which services are limited--or not covered at all--and consider whether each health insurance plan is a good match for you and your lifestyle.

Remember, the choices you make now could greatly affect your quality of life in the future.


What are your options when it comes to doctors, hospitals and other medical providers?

Make sure your present medical providers are listed on health insurance plans if you want to continue using them. If they're not, this could easily dictate the type of policy you need to look for.

What are your choices regarding specialists and specialty care? If you want to see a specialist, do you need a referral from your primary-care doctor--or can you refer yourself?


Examine where you'll go for the care you need. Are your doctors, hospitals and other medical care providers near where you live or work? Convenience and accessibility can be worth a lot when you're in a hurry or don't want to waste gas driving across town.

What about out-of-town care? If you get deathly ill while visiting Aunt Martha 500 miles from home, will your health insurance cover a needed doctor's visit or emergency procedure at the nearest doctor's office or hospital? Or are you required to notify your health insurance company, then go where they direct you?


While no health insurance plan covers everything, part of your goal should be to analyze your health care needs (both present and future) and choose the policy that includes most of what you need (or may need) at the lowest possible cost. Although no one really knows what the future holds, we can make predictions based on age, health, and medical and family history.

Several costs come into play here, and together they determine your monthly and/or yearly health insurance premiums. Deductibles, coinsurance amounts, copayments, lifetime or yearly plan maximums, and cost of health care outside a particular network all make a difference in the price you pay for your health insurance. Find out exactly what you're facing with each of these issues, and use the answers you get to compare policies side-by-side.

Getting Down to Basics

When looking for the right health insurance policy, get down to basics. Analyze your options and weigh significant factors like services, choice, location and costs. Then make a wise, informed decision--and protect yourself for years to come!

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