Health Insurance Needs for Children vs Adults
Health insurance is immensely beneficial for a number of reasons. The amount you pay out of pocket for any type of medical care is significantly reduced when you receive proper health coverage from a reputable insurance company. Health insurance needs vary depending on age, preexisting medical conditions, the type of network you’re seeking, and the amount you can pay for your premium each month. Distinct differences exist between the health insurance needs of a child versus an adult, so it’s important to gather all necessary information before choosing a plan for either yourself or your child.
Family Health Insurance Plans
To select the right health insurance for either yourself or your child, you must first understand the different types of coverage available. If you are seeking healthcare coverage for the first time and you’re a parent, a family based health insurance policy is probably your best option. Family plans are designed to cover two or more people, including your spouse and any children you have under the age of 26. This applies to children who have been adopted, and can include foster children in specific circumstances.
That being said, your monthly premium (the amount you pay for your insurance policy) is higher than it would be for an individual.
The exact amount you pay varies depending on the health care provider you’ve selected and the age of your children. If you have three children or more who are under the age of 21, you pay a monthly premium for the three oldest children, but you don’t have to pay for any of the younger siblings. For children with disabilities, coverage extends past the traditional 26 years of age deadline imposed on most family policies.
Individual Health Insurance Plans
In the United States, numerous health insurance plans are available for individuals who are only seeking coverage for themselves. The health plan you select is dependent upon several important factors. If you’re able to select an insurance plan through your employer, your options and premiums are available through their marketplace. If you’re unable to receive health insurance through your employer, you must use government assistance. Most state governments offer their own health insurance coverage, but there are some instances wherein this isn’t an option. In this case, you’ll apply for insurance coverage through the federal government of the U.S. during an open enrollment period.
The open enrollment period is a designated length of time where individuals are eligible to apply for a health insurance policy through the government. It’s important to research these dates in advance, as you typically can’t apply for coverage if you’ve missed this window of opportunity. Certain exceptions do exist and are permitted through a special enrollment period, which is influenced by specific life events. For example, if you’ve recently had a baby, gotten married, or lost your existing coverage, you may have the opportunity to apply for a new health plan during a special enrollment period.
Comparing Available Benefits
To assess your available health coverage options, it’s important to understand your needs. Do you take monthly prescriptions? If so, you’ll need to find insurance that covers the cost of these medications. The monthly premium you pay might be impacted by the added medication coverage, so be sure to select an option where the out-of-pocket cost is affordable for your budget.
Expectant mothers require different coverage for maternity services, so even if you have an existing plan, it might need to be updated prior to the arrival of your baby. Familiarize yourself with different insurance providers, such as Blue Cross Blue Shield Association and Humana Insurance Company to determine which of these network providers offers the type of coverage you’re seeking.