Ten Tips for Replacing Health Coverage
by Tony Novak
Changing health insurance is a ritual
part of changing jobs, graduating from school or starting your own
business. Fortunately it is now a lot easier and less expensive
than in the past. Medsave.com is the nations largest online
benefits enrollment service that offers this type of fast, affordable
and reliable coverage nationally with policies issued within one
business day. These tips will help you find the best value:
- Do not try to your change
insurance plan if you have a serious medical condition. Instead,
contact your current insurer directly to ask about continuation
of coverage options. Insurance services like Medsave.com are
designed to provide insurance only for unknown future medical
problems. These services do not help people with current medical
problems. If you have medical conditions and absolutely must
change health plans, switch to an HMO (these are not handled
- Think short term. Most
people who buy their own health insurance change their coverage
in less than a year. Buy the plan that offers you the best deal
now without concern for whether it will be available in a year.
Next year an entirely new generation of health plans will be
available. A plan that you bought more than a year ago would
not likely represent the best value for you today. Use short-term
medical insurance plans, student medical plans or foreign travel
insurance plans if you qualify. These offer better deals if
- Choose a higher deductible.
By taking a $1000 deductible, you will save more than $1000
in premium payments over a year's time. This should be an easy
decision from a mathematical viewpoint. Some young people can
buy a high deductible insurance plan for less than $30 per month
to cover any serious medical issues.
- Use free enrollment offers.
With an increasing number of plans now charging an up-front
enrollment fee, look for deals to save the enrollment fee whenever
possible. Medsave.com pays the enrollment fee for anyone switching
from a short term to a permanent insurance plan.
- Choose indemnity type
coverage and avoid HMOs whenever possible. This lets you and
your doctor maintain control of your medical care. There are
no networks; you choose your own doctor and hospital
and are free to switch at any time. There are no limits on travel,
since this type of coverage is equally valid everywhere in the
- Take a separate plan
if you travel outside the U.S. Most U.S. plans provide weak
foreign travel benefits and most worldwide plans provide weak
coverage in the U.S. SO it is best to carry separate plans tailored
to your travel schedule.
- Be aware of state issues.
Each state controls its own health insurance laws. Four states
MA, NJ, NY and VT make it nearly impossible for
its individual citizens to buy affordable health insurance.
The only legal way around this problem is to take out coverage
while living temporarily outside these states.
- Pay for 3 months of longer.
You can save money by paying for more than one month at a time.
Since most plans accept credit cards, it even makes financial
sense to charge it at a lower premium rate and then
pay off your own credit card over a few months. The premium
discount will usually be lower than the credit card finance
- Avoid the lesser-known
insurance plans. Health insurance premium rates are based directly
on the benefits that the insurer pays out to policyholders.
It makes no sense to enroll into a plan where there is a known
issue of claims problems in order to find lower premium rates.
Fortunately, the market share leaders maintain an excellent
reputation for claims handling. Stick to these market share
- Use a medical savings
account. If you could benefit from making your medical expenses
fully tax-deductible, open a medical savings account. There
are no account fees or charges for those who qualify for this
About the author:
Tony Novak, MBA, MT is a writer and financial adviser in Narberth,
PA. His businesses MedSave.com
and Freedom Benefits Association provide online benefits enrollment
to individuals and businesses in 47 states. He is a frequent author
lecturer on tax planning and employee benefit plan topics.
to Insurance Articles Index
| CGI tutorial
| Email Tutorial
Tutorial | Cookies
Tutorial | Privacy Tutorial
Tutorial | DreamWeaver
Tutorial | Domain
Name Tutorial | Business
Plan Tutorial | Search
Position Tutorial | Online
Advertising Tutorial | Ecommerce