Supplemental Health Insurance - When More Insurance Equals Lower Premiums

By Marilyn Katz

What is supplemental Health Insurance?

A supplemental health insurance policy provides coverage for specific situations. Accident insurance policies may provide a specified amount of cash and additional coverage for incidents like ambulances, ER visits, and physical therapy. Some of these expenses are not covered, or not covered well, under many current major medical policies. A supplemental sickness or critical illness policy may provide the same sort of coverage in the event of illness, rather than accidents.

Many covered families are shocked after a visit to an outpatient urgent care center, because they find that some services would have been covered in the hospital, but do not get covered in an outpatient setting. I also find this surprising because outpatient care is usually less expensive than inpatient care, and I would think that insurance companies would want their covered families to shop wisely. The system does not seem to reward consumers for being good shoppers.

How Can Supplement Insurance Help?

Individuals and Small businesses can save a large part of their premiums by simply raising their deductibles. The cost difference between a $500 deductible and a $1500 is dramatic. Health insurance with a $5000 or $10,000 deductible can usually be provided with much less underwriting for preexisting conditions, less risk or rate increases, and of course, much lower initial premiums!

Of course, a large deductible means that more common medical expenses will come from the pockets of the insured people. However accident, sickness, and critical illness supplemental insurance can fit in here nicely. Premiums are usually very low on supplemental policies, they require very little underwriting. Most applicants are accepted.

For instance, a $5,000 accident and sickness policy will provide cash for expenses that need to be paid out of pocket because the deductible has not been met. The money can also help pay for medical expenses that are not covered, or only partially covered, under a major medical health insurance policy. And of course, the money can pay for expenses that are related to an illness or injury, but are not direct medical expenses. Imagine that a trip to an emergency room and subsequent medical care may cause you to lose billable hours at work, pay for dependent day care, incur parking and transportation expenses, or need extra help around the house.

Where Can You Find Higher Deductible Health Plans and Supplemental Insurance?

Many individual and small group health plans come with association benefits. The supplements and major medical come as a package. Otherwise, the products can be purchased on their own. A qualified health insurance agent should be able to help you. I think the easiest way to find a good health insurance agent, or a flexible health plan, is to shop online. Many reliable services exist that provide online quotes and qualified health insurance agents in your area. Look for signs of quality BBB partnership and a secure server.

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