Several Factors To Consider When Evaluating Your Family Health Insurance Coverage
Family health insurance coverage, naturally, will vary depending on the type of plan you have. Most plans generally offer basic medical coverage, but you should be cautious not to make assumptions and evaluate the details of any plan carefully.
When comparing different types of family health insurance coverage, be sure to look at how each deals with various benefits. For instance, does the policy offer an annual physical exam benefit? What is the process for receiving care by specialists? Do you need a referral from your primary care provider (typical for HMO’s) or can you self-refer (option for PPO’s, and traditional indemnity plans)?
How is hospitalization and emergency care handled? What sort of prescription drug benefit is included? You will also want to inquire as to any vision and dental benefits that may be included with your family health insurance coverage? Often these last two benefits, if available, are provided through and underwritten by a different insurance company than the one providing the health insurance. Be sure to discuss this with your health insurance broker.
Many insurance companies that offer family health insurance coverage will provide limited coverage for mental health, drug and alcohol abuse, family planning, physical therapy, home health and hospice care, and chiropractic services. If you or a family member will need any of these services, look closely at the potential out-of-pocket expenses. Depending on the cost, it may make more sense financially to select a more expensive premium that provides better coverage for one or more of these services.
Preventative care is an important issue for any family health insurance coverage. Yearly physical exams were mentioned above as usually offered as a basic benefit. However, you should also inquire about such services as children's immunization, breast exams and Pap smears for women, as well as help for people who want to quit smoking or lose weight (if applicable).
Evaluating your family health insurance coverage requirements means you need to look at several different factors. It's essential that you ask lots of questions and educate yourself when going the process of acquiring health insurance for your family. By doing so, you can be confidant that you are making the wisest health insurance choices for you and your family.
About the Author: Jonathon James has been working in the health industry for nearly twenty years. To view additional articles and resources related to family health insurance coverage, please visit