Three new trends effecting your cost of healthcare now.
The health plan you choose ultimately affects what you pay for healthcare. We’ve covered the changes that you need to be aware of under TrumpCare.
One thing that is worth noting again is the new Copper Plans that are lower cost but offer limited coverage. As many as 2 million Americans are expecting to purchase Cooper Plans in 2019. Politicians and healthcare professionals are concerned that Americans will purchase the plans and expect full coverage at time of service. Consequently, some states are not authorizing them for sale because they realize that being underinsured is the next worst thing to being uninsured.
Three trends that effect the cost of healthcare
1/ The more money you make the worse you eat.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC] has recently reported that fast food consumption goes up when income goes up. Those aged 20-39 years old consumed the most and men consume more fast food than women.
It’s something to be mindful about now because fast food is both high in caloric value and low in nutritional value. Eat too much fast food or too often and it will increase your risk of adverse health issues [ie. diabetes, obesity, heart disease]. Increased risk means more healthcare which means higher cost.
The best thing you can do now to save money on food and healthcare is to skip the fast food line and head home for dinner.
2. The cost of healthcare is increasing faster than wages.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation [KHN] annual review of plans, employees are footing more and more of the healthcare bill for two reasons:
1/ Deductibles keep increasing. The average deductible has increased 212% since 2008.
2/ Health Insurance premiums keep increasing.
When you add 1 + 2 the total increase in healthcare is more than the average wage increase for most Americans. The good news is that many employers realize employees are maxed out. No one has the solution yet but everyone’s working on it.
In the mean time, save the money from your tax cut to buy either a health plan with richer benefits or to pay for the healthcare services not covered by your plan.
3. The health plans provide less coverage and fewer options.
Besides the new Copper plans, there are other changes effecting coverage. You might have heard the term “Narrow Network”. Essentially, health insurers limit the number of providers in their network in exchange for bigger discounts. A narrow network can help you save money.
The problem is that people often go to a doctor or hospital not included in the network. When that happens, you pay more and in some cases, a lot more. You’ve probably heard the stories about someone getting stuck with an extraordinarily large hospital bill after their insurer paid.
There is new federal and state legislation expected in 2019 that will limit those big bills and make the insurance companies pay a bigger portion. Balanced billing is another reason why “Medicare for All” is catching on.
In the mean time, the easiest way to save money is to stay in the network. Be sure to review the network carefully when you choose your health plan for 2019.
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