Ah, that wonderful time of the year. The time when open enrollment begins for health insurance. The company I work for is getting ready for open enrollment for benefits for 2015. They provided a "tip sheet" I thought I would share with you all in case you are interested.
* When evaluating healthcare options, it is important to consider cost and coverage. Some plans cover a lot but might cost more. Other plans may not cost as much but might have higher copays or deductibles. A copay is the amount you would pay for a service, such as a doctor's visit or lab test. A deductible is the amount you must pay before your insurance starts to pay its portion of costs for a covered health expense. The deductible could be as low as a few hundred dollars or as high as several thousand dollars. Most plans cover a certain percentage of healthcare visits after the deductible is met. For example, if the insurance plan covered 80% of doctor visits and the doctor you use charges $100 for a visit, that means you would pay $20 for the visit.
* Determine what doctors and hospitals you can use. Some plans have their own doctors / hospitals, such as an HMO plan. Other plans have in network or in plan doctors and hospitals. If you get treatment outside of the plan guidelines, the cost of that treatment is often your responsibility so it is important to know the coverage limits.
* Some plans cover other services such as vision, supportive therapies (occupational / physical / speech). It is important to review that in making a plan choice.
* It is important to really review the covered services for each plan offered in order to make an informed decision. Only YOU know what services you need and you can choose a plan that best meets those needs.