Intro To Health Insurance

by: Ron King

Health insurance is simply protection of the person or group insured against financial loss from illness or injury. Can you live without it? Probably. Should you? The answer depends upon whom you ask.

Like other forms of insurance, you don’t need health insurance until you NEED it. Automobile insurance doesn’t help until you get into a car accident. Life insurance isn’t of value until you die. And health insurance doesn’t do you any good until you need medical assistance. But, if you believe in Murphy’s Law — that whatever can go wrong will go wrong — then you should consider getting health insurance.

Health insurance coverage varies greatly between policies, but basically, it pays a pre-negotiated percentage of the expenses for a policy holder’s covered medical treatments.

3 Types of Health Insurance

In the United States, there are 3 basic types of health insurance:

1. Self-Insured/Uninsured. People with no insurance and people who have health insurance but are responsible for paying 100% of the insurance premium. This group is estimated at 30% of the US population.

Managed Care Plans. They fall into 3 categories. All are essentially networks offering services from specific providers at contracted prices:

* Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO) are plans in which members pay a fixed monthly fee, regardless of how much medical care they need in a given month. HMOs provide medical services ranging from office visits to hospitalization and surgery, and usually require that you stay within the network when you need services from physicians and hospitals.

* Preferred Provider Organizations (PPO) are groups of doctors and hospitals that provide medical services only to members. PPO members typically pay for services as they are provided, and the PPO sponsor reimburses them for the cost of the treatment. In most cases, the healthcare providers and the PPO sponsor negotiate the price for each type of service in advance.

* Point of Service (POS) plans are less common than the other 2. Here you pay no deductible and usually only a minimal co-payment when you use a healthcare provider within your network. You also must choose a primary care physician who is responsible for all referrals within the POS network. If you choose to go outside of the network for healthcare, you will be subject to excess charges or deductibles.

3. Indemnity Plans allow participants to seek medical assistance whenever and wherever they need it. Participants can visit any doctor or specialist, as often as they feel necessary. There are no restrictions when it comes to seeking medical help. This is by far the most expensive type of health insurance plan.

Which of these types of health insurance is best for you will depend on your personal situation. Choosing a health insurance plan is a time-consuming task, but an educated choice will ensure you have the right insurance coverage when the need arises. And as we age, the need will inevitably arise.

Ron King is a full-time researcher, writer, and web developer. Visit healthinsuring to learn more about this subject.

Copyright 2005 Ron King.



Inexpensive Life Insurance To Protect What You’ve Earned
by: Mike Yeager

Adequate life insurance to cover your income producing ability is a product that is really needed today to give peace of mind. Life insurance was originally conceived to protect a man’s family when his death left them without income. Over time is has developed into a variety of policy plans. In a “whole life” policy, fixed premiums are paid throughout the insured’s lifetime; this accumulated amount, augmented by compound interest, is paid to a beneficiary in a lump sum upon the insured’s death; the benefit is paid even if the insured had terminated the policy. Under “universal life,” the insured can vary the amount and timing of the premiums; the funds compound to create the death benefit.

With “variable life,” the fixed premiums are invested in a portfolio (with earning reinvested), and the death benefit is based on the performance of the investment. In “term life,” coverage is for a specified time period (e.g., 5-10 years); such plans do not build up value during the term. Annuity policies, which pay the insured a yearly income after a certain age, have also been developed. In the 1990s, life insurance companies began to allow early payouts to terminally ill patients. In other words, a policy holder with a grave illness could now access some of their life insurance funds to use as they choose.

We’ve searched all over the web and have located a few quality companies that we feel are not only financially sound and secure, but which also offer competitive rates. You don’t need to even sit down and visit with an agent, all the information gathering and work can be done over the internet.

You’ll find the best life insurance for your needs that will comfortably fit into your budget. Solid life insurance will give you peace of mind and confidence.

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