11 Things that medicine has taught me about health insurance…

By on May 20, 2012 under Health Insurance, Health Reform

1. The reason health insurance is so costly is that we don’t use it like insurance which is to protect against uncertain losses. We expect insurance companies to pay for everything, including routine, predictable care. If our car insurance paid for oil changes and new tires, we would be paying a lot more for car insurance, oil changes, and new tires.

2. When you pay a middle man (insurance company) to manage something, those on either side of the middle man (doctors and patients) get screwed.

3. Insurance reimbursement is based on illness not health.

4. Avoid HMO’s like the plague?

5. The best insurance plan for those who want control of their health care dollars is a High Deductible Health Plan combined with a Health Savings Account (HDHP/HSA).

6. The $4 prescriptions from Target and Wal-Mart offer medications that can take care of most medical conditions.

7. Increase your deductible to whatever amount you can afford in case of a medical emergency. If you can afford a $10,000 unexpected loss, increase your deductible to $10,000. You will save a lot of money in the long run.

8. Unless you see a doctor frequently (once a month), do not take the “co-pay option” on a high deductible insurance plan.

9. Everything is negotiable, including health care. Costs for surgery, radiological procedures, labs, etc… are often billed at a much higher rate. Always ask for a cash discount when you are paying the bill.

10. It is better to pay out of pocket for predictable and affordable care.

11. The less the insurance company knows about your health, the better off you are.