Health insurance basically provides coverage for medical related expenses. It covers visits to the doctors, treatment cost, etc. There are many companies that provide these policies such as: Blue Cross, Aetna, and United Healthcare are a few.
There are four types of policies:
a) Fee-for-Service Plans b) Health Maintenance Organizations(HMO) c) Point-of-Service Plans (POS) d) Preferred Provider Organizations (PPOs).
Fee-for-service plans: Under this, the individual has to pay a monthly fee, called premium. In return, the insurance company pay fees for the services covered by the policy. Under this plan, you can choose any doctor, any hospital in any part of the country. The insurer will pay a portion of your doctor and hospital bills. Before the insurance payments begin, you have to pay a certain amount of money each year. This is known as deductible. The deductible has to be paid each year under this policy. Also, not all health expenses are covered by the policy. You should find out which health expenses are covered in the insurance policy.
HMO: This insurance plan primarily focuses on the long term care of the insured person and is less expensive. These are prepaid health plans. This policy provides extensive care for you and your family (hospital stays, emergency care, doctors' visits, laboratory tests, surgery, x-rays, therapy, immunizations, etc). Under this policy you have to choose one doctor to serve as your primary care doctor. This doctor provides most of your medical care. If needed, he will refer you to specialists and other health care professionals.
POS: This insurance policy is the combination of two insurance policies (PPO and HMO).The primary care normally make referrals to other providers in the plan. The members might refer themselves outside the plan and will still get some coverage. This plan pays all or most of the bill, if the doctor makes a referral out of the network. You have to pay a coinsurance, if you refer yourself to a provider outside the network.
PPO: This insurance policy allows the insured to consult any doctor he wishes. However, deductibles will be less for in-network services. Normally, the network physicians make reasonable charges. But if an out-of-network physician charges more for services, then the insurance company will only pay 80% of the in-network charges.
As the cost of medical treatment is increasing day-by-day, so the demand for health insurance is rapidly increasing day-by-day. Be vigilant and find the best policy for you and your family.