Open Enrollment season is the time to evaluate your health insurance plan, and future needs. You may feel as though you’re very satisfied with your plan, or you might be shopping for a new policy. Either way, make sure you’ve considered these six important factors before making your final decision.
Your spouse. Is it cheaper to pay for spousal coverage, or let your spouse buy his or her own policy through work or the exchange? Compare the price of doing things each way. Keep in mind that if you each have your own policy, you’ll each be subject to your own deductibles.
Your adult children. You can cover your child under your policy up until they reach age 26. If you’re paying for a family policy anyway, why not save them the money they would have spent on their own policy?
Weigh the options available on the exchange versus your employer’s coverage. Even if your employer offers health insurance coverage, you might find a cheaper or better plan on the exchange.
Check with your doctor. If you’re considering a change in health insurance policies, call your current doctor to be sure he or she accepts the new policy. This is especially important if you have a chronic condition which requires regular attention from a specialist, or if doctors are scarce in your area.
Think about your family’s health history, and your age. You may be tempted to switch to a high-deductible plan in order to save money on premiums each month. But if your family tends to be accident-prone, someone is ill very often, or you’re getting older, this could be a costly mistake.
If you do choose a high deductible plan, enroll in a Health Savings Account (HSA). This option allows you to set aside pre-tax dollars to be used on qualifying medical expenses. You’ll can a bit on your taxes, while financially preparing yourself for large medical bills.