Health Insurance Options for 2021

November 24, 2020

Are you confused with all of the health insurance options? Do you need a little clarification? If so, Ryan James of James Insurance Group in Paris has shared some information you might find helpful.

There are many things to take into consideration when looking for a health insurance policy to fit you. Are you looking for the best price, the biggest network, etc? When comparing the plans you will need to take into consideration what your family's needs are. Review the types of treatments you have received in the past. Health Insurance is full of the alphabet. From HMOs, POS, EPO, HSA, etc. Certain plans such as HMO or POS require referrals but tend to be the cheapest overall plans. However, with the lower costs, you do lose the freedom to choose your providers. With that being said, if you trust your primary doctor to pick your specialists for you than a POS or HMO plan may be better fitted for you.

Some, however, tend to want to choose their own specialists. If that is the case you might look for a PPO or EPO plan. EPO plan costs may help you keep your costs down as long as you find providers in the network provided by the plan. For most of us that live here in rural Missouri a PPO plan as we may be forced to go to a physician out of network.

Now, since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, we have heard the term "High-deductible Health Plan" or HDHP. An HDHP can be any one of the types that I have talked about above. They typically have lower premiums, but you must pay higher out of pocket costs. These plans qualify you to open a Health Savings Account (HSA) which is a tax-advantaged account that allows you to pay health care costs.

Something that needs to be taken into consideration when choosing your health insurance plan is what hospitals in our area are considered "in-network". If you have a preferred doctor or hospital you need to make sure that they are included in your network. If you want a certain hospital or doctor you should then eliminate any plan that does not include them in their network. A larger network is very important if you live in a rural community such as ours.

I know that most do not want to deal with the hassles of researching all of this and making these types of decisions on our own. Unfortunately, a lot of insurance agencies have stepped away from selling health insurance due to the implications of the Affordable Care Act, but they are still out there. My advice is to find an Insurance Agent that will help you through the process and explain to you your options. Do not be afraid to ask questions, and have them highlight the key points I have listed above. The highest premium health insurance plan may not be the best fit for you, and likewise, the highest deductible plan might not be the best fit either. I have sold policies on the principle of finding a policy best fitted for you. If you buy the highest premium policy with a low deductible, but cannot afford to pay for it in 2 months then the policy did you no good, and it did our agency no good. A good Insurance Agent will not only help guide you in finding the right policy for you but make sure that it is the best fit for your pocketbook.
If you would like to reach out to Ryan, his information is 125 West Monroe-P.O. Box 267, Paris, Mo. Office: 660-327-5203 or Cell: 660-651-2769



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