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Important Things to Keep in Mind When Switching Health Insurance

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When it comes to adding enjoyable items to your bucket list, switching health insurance carriers is probably not going to make the cut. Researching different health insurance options can be time consuming and overwhelming, and since your existing plan probably auto-enrolls you in the same one each year, you probably don’t feel an overwhelming urge to make any changes.
However, there are a number of reasons to consider switching health insurance plans. For example:
  • Your current doctor no longer accepts your insurance
  • Your costs went up but coverage didn't improve
  • Your health needs changed
  • You're considering retirement
In order to successfully switch your health insurance plan in as stress-free a way as possible, consider the following:

Affordable Care Act: Marketplace Tips

Before you start looking for a new plan, think about what is inspiring you to make the change and what your current plan lacks. This can be high deductibles, a lack of drug coverage, costly premiums and difficult access to mental health care. Then, to make the change, log into your Healthcare.gov account and begin your new health insurance application. Once you are in the Marketplace on the website, you will be able to compare and contrast plans and narrow down your choices, based on the list you created earlier.

Non-ACA Plans: Document Everything

If you are not enrolled in an Affordable Care Act health insurance plan, you can typically cancel your medical insurance at any time, for any reason. While it is nice to not have to wait for an open enrollment period, resist the urge to cancel your existing plan until you have a new one in place. Research other available options and select the best one based on your age, health issues, income and what features it offers. Once you have enrolled in your new plan, then call your insurance provider to request a cancellation. For the first few months, double check your bank statements and insurance bills to be sure you are not double paying for your old plan as well as the new one. As a backup, ask your old insurance company to send you written proof of the cancellation date.

Medicare: Know Your Options

If you are getting close to your 65th birthday, you may be eligible for Medicare. Medicare is a national health insurance program that is made up of four parts: Parts A, B, C and D. Parts A and B make up what is traditionally known as Original Medicare. Original Medicare includes both inpatient and outpatient care, such as hospital stays and doctor appointments. Part D offers prescription drug coverage and can be added on to Original Medicare for an additional fee. If this basic coverage isn't enough for you, you may want to look into what is known as a Medicare Advantage plan. Also called Medicare Part C, this type of plan offers extras such as vision and dental and combines them with the coverage of Medicare Parts A, B and D.

Switching Health Insurance Does Not Have to be Difficult

You deserve to have the best health insurance plan possible. If you are about to retire or you notice that your rates are going up, it is definitely time to consider a change. By making a wish list of what you are looking for, doing plenty of research and careful shopping, you will be able to successfully switch to a new health insurance plan that is the best fit for you.

*contributed post*