At the end of every year, along with cool weather and the holidays, comes another season, one most people would like to ignore. Yes, it's the time to choose your health plan.
Everyone knows healthcare is expensive. The average cost of having a baby or staying in the hospital for three days is $30,000. So, to manage these costs, most people get health insurance. And now under ObamaCare you must have health insurance, otherwise you will likely pay a penalty. All of this makes it important for you to understand your health plan options and select the best plan for you and your family.
No matter where you get your health insurance, you will have to choose that insurance during a yearly "open enrollment period." Most employers have an enrollment period near the end of the year when employees can review and select from the different plans offered by the company. Similarly, those that qualify for Medicare have an enrollment period in the fall, and the healthcare exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) start their annual enrollment period in November.
As people approach the daunting task of choosing a health plan for themselves and their loved ones, they're often confused by the choices and the options available. Many people just look at price (if that's clear). Some people simply keep the health plan they have because it's too hard to figure out how to switch, even if their current plan doesn't meet their needs.
This guide will help you understand the often confusing way health insurance works before giving you the tools to examine the choices you have and confidently make the decisions that are right for you.