Health Insurance Coverage
Considering recent events, it may seem like a good idea to skip coverage. Reports from CNN reveal that Congress has successfully eliminated the penalty tax imposed on those without health coverage. Experts feel that the new law would increase the number of uninsured to 13 million by 2027. Subsequently, premiums for the individual market may rise by 10%. Still, compared to the rising costs of medical care, having health insurance will serve you best.
The Price of Health Care
Even the most cautious people shouldn’t settle for not having coverage, especially when life-threatening diseases and accidents can be unpredictable. The costs of this kind of medical emergency far outweigh the monthly premiums that a policy holder will have to pay in the long run.
An unforeseen hospitalization can change the entire course of a person’s life, and there are additional risks for women because of certain diseases. For instance, in 2014, more than 12,000 women in the US were diagnosed with cervical cancer. And this year, over 260,000 cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed.
Consider the case of actress Shannen Doherty, who began fighting breast cancer in 2015. The star of Charmed and Beverly Hills 90210 filed a lawsuit against her former manager, on the grounds that the latter had let her health insurance lapse at a crucial time.
The actress argued that had she been on health insurance and regular doctor visits, the cancer would have been detected earlier. It would have saved her money on expensive treatments, not to mention avoided a compromise on her wellbeing. This reinforces the importance of health insurance, especially in emergency cases.
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HealthCare.gov estimates that a 3-day hospital stay can cost up to $30,000 and a surgical procedure can reach up to $45,000. This is all the more crucial if you consider that the average American makes only $44,980 a year. That’s why the chronically ill, which make up half of the entire nation’s population, turn to health insurance to save them from a lifetime of debt.
A study by the Kaiser Family Foundation revealed that about a million American adults filed for bankruptcy in 2015 due to medical bills. With a practical health care plan, you avoid using up a significant portion of your budget – or even your entire savings – from unexpected medical expenses.
Other Benefits to Consider
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Health insurance can do more than protect your savings from unexpected medical expenses. If you are a health conscious individual, you are likely to have a lower mortality rate because of the reduced risks of serious illnesses. It qualifies you for a better underwriting, which can result in significantly lower monthly premiums.
The majority of insurance policies also provide access to preventive services such as free consultations with a physician, regular check-ups and screenings, and vaccinations against common diseases. These processes are invaluable for detecting a condition at a non-critical stage when it is still easier and cheaper to manage.
In addition, a health care policy increases your chances of being provided with quality medical care if an accident requires you to get primary attention. Following that scenario, recovery and rehabilitation will also become easier to obtain, as opposed to the uninsured which typically have a longer waiting time, not to mention higher deductibles. Think of having health insurance as a special pass for medical care.
Being insured also allows you to visit a primary care physician for minor issues instead of the E.R. which would be much cheaper. You get access to comprehensive policies as well, which include psychotherapy sessions, rehabilitation services, behavioral health treatment, and discounts for prescription drugs.
Savvy Woman is an advocate of being in good financial standing so that you and your family will be taken care of in time for retirement. Health care without insurance can drain your entire life’s savings and make it difficult for you to get back on your feet. For this reason, purchasing an insurance policy to match your needs may be the most crucial step you make in reaching your retirement goals free of stress and anxiety.
Brianna Summers has been a health insurance consultant for 6 years, specializing in cases of women in minority groups. She is also a yoga teacher and fitness advocate who enjoys helping middle-aged women achieve their health goals.