Everyone needs some form of health insurance for themselves and/or their families. It is estimated that about 60% of bankruptcies are due to medical bills and over a six-year period approximately 137,000 American died from lack of health insurance. So, if you don’t want to be just another statistic there are a few things you should know.

  1. Look into your employers health insurance plan. The larger the group the more benefits that can be negotiated on your behalf.  Guaranteed issue: The insurance company must supply coverage for all applicants whose employment qualifies them for coverage. The insurance company also cannot raise the cost for an applicant who has a pre-existing condition.  Group health plans are guaranteed issue.
  2. If you, or a spouse, attend a university that offers a health insurance plan, that could be the right plan for you. Make sure you do your research as a basic coverage plan may not cover everything life throws at you. For example, BYU health insurance doesn’t include maternity coverage. You have to pay more for maternity coverage.
  3. Also as part of the new health care reform law, all young adults between the ages of 19-26 will have the option to stay on their parents’ health care plan.
  4. Medicaid is another option that is available for those in low-income circumstances. There is a lot of paper work and you will wait on the phone for at least 45 minutes to talk to anyone if you have a question, but it is a great peace of mind. However, depending on the type of coverage that you have, you may not be able to get dental coverage. This is also a great option for pregnant women and young children. Baby Your Baby is an introductory program that will cover your initial pregnancy appointments while you wait for your medicaid application to be accepted.
  5. Private insurance companies created short-term health insurance for those that need coverage, but are between jobs.
  6. Selecthealth.org is a great website to help decide what plan is right for you. On their site you can compare plans, select health and dental insurance and get quotes from various companies.

When choosing an insurance plan there is plenty for you to consider. Premiums and out-of-pocket costs are going to be top priorities on anyones list, but you should also take a look a the company providing the service. A few items to consider:

  1. The financial stability of the company
  2. If you need to, will you be able to switch doctors?
  3. How long will it take the company to respond to your concerns?

It would also be prudent to look up the ratings of the company as well as reviews from current or previous clients. While there can be an overwhelming amount of information to consider in choosing a health insurance plan, you can narrow the search by knowing who in your household needs coverage and what kind of coverage they need.