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ABC's of Health Insurance

 
   
 

Shopping for health insurance can be a bit like trying to read a book printed in a foreign language. The terminology is filled with acronyms, and many of us are left wondering what we’re even reading -- and what plan is right for us.

 
  Before a you can even begin shopping for health insurance, you need to determine what kind of plan is best for you, your family and your needs.  
 
Arrow An HMO, or Health Maintenance Organization, is generally less expensive but sets certain parameters around a person’s healthcare. Only specific doctors, hospitals, pharmacies and services are covered under an HMO plan.
Arrow A PPO, which stands for Preferred Provider Organization, is essentially the same as an HMO but typically allows more freedom in choosing a doctor. A PPO may also cost a bit more for a subscriber. Doctors within a PPO network have contracted with the insurance company to offer services at a reduced, negotiated fee.
Arrow Nowadays, a lot of employers offer FSAs, or Flexible Spending Accounts, for employees to pay into with every paycheck. The account is paid into using pre-tax deductions from each paycheck and then used as a way pay for healthcare that is essentially uninsured until a specified deductible is reached.
Arrow Insurance subscribers who have recently quit or have been terminated from their job are allowed to pay for their health insurance under the COBRA law, which is formally known as the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985. The subscriber will be responsible for 100 percent of the cost.
Arrow People who are covered under more than one insurance plan will need to have a COB, or Coordination of Benefits on file. This is used to prevent overpayment for services rendered.
 
     
     
 
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