10 Things You Need to Know for a Health Insurance Quote
These days, it is easy to get a health insurance quote. A few minutes on the phone is all it takes. Not sure you’re prepared? Relax. Here are the 10 things you need to know for a health insurance quote.
1. Zip Code
Many healthcare providers begin with the zip code of where you live.
2. First and Last Name
A healthcare provider will ask your full name. Give a middle name if you have one too.
3. Contact Phone Number
What is the best phone number to reach you? Is this a cell phone or a landline?
4. What City Do You Live In?
They know the zip code and they just want to confirm the city or town where you live.
5. When Was the Last Time You Had Health Insurance?
When were you last insured for health insurance? What was the date and the name of the health insurance company?
6. Is There a Particular Doctor that You Like?
If yes, an agent can check to see if the doctor is in the health insurance company’s network of providers. If not, you may want to find out which insurance your doctor accepts.
7. Date of Birth
A healthcare provider always will ask for this information. It is an important personal identifier.
8. Tobacco Use
Do you smoke or use tobacco? A health provider wants to know.
9. Is There a Particular Health Coverage or Deductible You Are Looking For?
Are you looking for a HMO or PPO? How much of a deductible can you handle?
10. Are There Particular Prescription Medications that You Need?
Let the healthcare provider know about the prescription drugs that you are taking.
With just 10 questions it is easy to apply for a health insurance quote. But you have some big questions to answer. What kind of healthcare coverage do you want? Would a PPO plan work for you? Or is a HMO better for your family? Let’s take a look at each option.
PPO health plans also known as “Preferred Provider Organization” are one of the most popular kinds of health plans.
With a PPO plan, you are able to visit whatever in-network doctor or healthcare provider that you want without requiring a referral from a primary care physician. With a PPO plan, you are encouraged to use the insurance company’s network of preferred doctors. And you won’t need to choose a primary care physician.
With PPO plans, in-network healthcare services will be covered at higher benefit levels than out-of-network. That is why it is so important to choose an in-network doctor and other healthcare providers when you have a PPO. It will save you significant money.
HMO plans are also known as “Health Maintenance Organization” plans. With HMO plans, you receive a range of healthcare services through a network of providers who agree to supply services to members. With these plans, you have coverage for a broad range of preventative health services.
And with HMO plans, you’re required to choose a primary care physician. This physician will take care of most of your healthcare needs. And to see a specialist you will need to get a referral from your primary care physician.
That is why choosing a primary care physician that you like and respect is very important when using a HMO health plan. This doctor plays a big role in your healthcare services and experiences. With HMO plans, members have lower out-of-pocket healthcare expenses. And there may not be a deductible to pay before health coverage starts and co-payments are very low. But be aware that with HMOs, you will have no coverage for services by out-of-network providers. And the same goes for services rendered without a proper referral from a primary care physician.
Weigh the pros and cons of each major type of coverage plan carefully. What makes the most sense for your family? And you also will want to crunch the numbers. How much does each type of health care plan cost? You want the best value for your money. And you want the best plan to meet your medical needs.
Planning for Deductibles
Don’t forget to figure in deductible costs. The deductible is the amount you pay before your health plan covers the cost for medical services. If you have a high deductible you will have a lower premium cost. If you have a low deductible, a low amount out of your own pocket to pay before a health plan kicks in, you will have a higher premium cost.
One way to prepare for the cost of the deductible for a health plan is to have a small emergency fund set aside for the deductible amount. Put the money aside in a checking or saving account and you will be prepared for your health plan’s deductible when the time comes. Experts say an emergency fund should have three months of living expenses but even a few hundred dollars is a good start. Do what you can to prepare for upcoming healthcare costs.
Shop wisely for your health insurance quote and choose the type of coverage that is right for your family. Be prepared to pay your health plan’s deductible. And you’ll be able to provide good health insurance and medical services for your family.
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An Exclusive Provider Organization (EPO) is a managed care plan where services are covered only if you go to doctors, specialists and hospitals in the plan’s network. The only exception to this rule is in the case of an emergency.
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