“It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.” -Mahatma Gandhi
Choosing an appropriate health insurance coverage is daunting—and with your existing policies from your employer, it can even be complicated. However, there are a few ways to expedite the process of choosing the right health insurance in the Philippines. Even with the myriad of premiums, deductibles, and other provisions, selecting a health insurance policy that would be right for you will be a lot easier. Let this article serve as your guide in your endeavor to finding the insurance policy appropriate for you, here are some guidelines and tips to follow:
1.) Decide which plan type best meets your needs
Every individual has a different set of needs, and you would need to determine yours in order to find out which policy would suit you best. Generally, there are three types of health plans which are health maintenance organizations (HMO), preferred provider organizations (PPO) and point of service plans (POS). If you want to see physicians only within a specific network, HMO will work best for you. Though it gives you less flexibility, it is more affordable. PPOs are more expensive than HMOs as it allows you to stay in-network and out-network for a fee. Lastly POS takes elements out of both. Determine what works for you and go with that.
2.) Identify changes before re-enrolling
If you do not want to deal with unexpected costs, it might be helpful to see if some of your benefits have changed. You might be surprised to see certain advantages which were offered before are no longer in your current policy, or the cost of covering your spouse might have increased. If this is the case, then you might need to switch plans. Review your existing coverage first before renewals, so that you would not be stuck with coverage that is hardly appropriate for you.
3.) Consider your favorite doctors
If you have a preferred physician, it will help you a great deal to see whether your primary care physician and specialists are already in a provider network. In this way, should you want to see your specialist, you are immediately covered by your health insurance plan without the added cost.
4.) Make adjustments to your current plan or consider switching
Over the years, your needs may change, and along with this, your health insurance coverage would need to be modified as well in order to accommodate these changes. A good example of this is starting a family, which naturally, would require you to get maternity coverage or perhaps, you want to include your eldest child into your insurance. Your health insurance policy changes accordingly with your life changes as well, and from time to time, you should modify and keep it updated.
5.) Size up the cost
Before deciding on a health insurance coverage plan, it would be helpful to compare the total cost of different plans first. Young and healthy individuals may want to forgo the exorbitant monthly premiums for a higher deductible. However, before arriving at a final decision, make sure to factor in copays and coinsurance as well.
6.) Do not get lured by new freebies
Do not simply get a health insurance coverage for the sole reason of what it can offer you for free. Remember, your primary goal in choosing a health insurance coverage should be what it could offer you and how well it fits you, your lifestyle and your needs—not for its added freebies. Additionally, while you might think you are getting an added perk, some plans might have already been offering it as part of their insurance coverage a long time ago. Be meticulous when choosing a coverage, and focus on the coverage itself—not the freebies.