Although modifications to the Affordable Care Act are likely to occur, further implementation will begin in 2013. The underlying premise of the Affordable Care Act is that health insurance will be available to all; however, significant variations in rates can be found. In addition, health conditions covered vary by state and even cities. For example, California requires coverage for Autism and San Francisco covers sexual reassignment surgery. To get an update on the situation, I spoke to Michal Mahoney, the marketing director for GoHealth, an online portal for finding health insurance coverage.
Mahoney noted that the Affordable Care Act will result in an increase in premiums to varying degrees for many Americans. The biggest increase will occur for young, healthy individuals. For example, he predicts that the rates will triple for a young, healthy male. The Affordable Care Act mandates coverage for many items such as maternity care and eye exams; however, Mahoney informed me that most consumers are unaware that the degree of actual coverage varies widely.
He offers a helpful tip: if you and your family do not require certain benefits such as maternity care, seek out a plan that has minimal benefits for that service. You will still pay for something you don’t need; however, the financial impact will be much less.
Some benefits are not mandated by the Affordable Care Act but fall under the discretion of the employer. For example, maternity leave for a man is offered by some—but far from all—companies. Regarding employer-provided healthcare coverage, if you and your spouse have insurance offered by your respective employers, select the one that provides the best coverage for only the services that you expect to need. Another money-saving strategy noted by Mahoney applies to individuals who are interested in purchasing life or disability insurance. If you are interested in those features, try to locate an insurance carrier that offers all that you need. Often, you will get a discount by combining benefits. Also, you might avoid a hassle if you develop a problem that does not clearly fall under one type of insurance.
Although, many will find the aforementioned tips to be helpful, each situation is different. Thus, seeking help from a company such as GoHealth might be of significant benefit. GoHealth is the nation’s most complete online portal for finding health insurance coverage. Mahoney notes that his company has helped more than 2 million consumers compare health insurance quotes and purchase individual coverage online, through their agent network, or directly through a major health insurance company. For further information, click on this link.