Writing at the intersection of motherhood, feminism and my Latinidad

01 December 2014

Reducing Open Enrollment Headaches!

President Obama Signs Health Insurance Legislation Into Law by Pete Souza
Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons
Far too many of my friends are underinsured or have no insurance at all. That is why I was a proponent for the Affordable Care Act or ACA. But I know that just because we have access to ACA things are fine and dandy either. For many people it can be overwhelming to choose an insurance plan. I know when it is open enrollment time for my workplace insurance plan I hid my head because it was confusing enough to select a plan the first time around.

That is why I am partnering with UnitedHealthcare to bring you helpful videos to make selecting an ACA plan a little easier for you. The first thing is to check out their Open Enrollment Guide to help you figure out what you should be thinking about when selecting a plan.

Another aspect of health insurance that you should keep in mind is the differing cost of treatment and procedures. Before ACA, friend of VLF, Kathie Bergquist, Editor in Chief of Ms. Fit Magazine, had been covering herself with the same plan since grad school:
As an adjunct professor, I don't receive health insurance through my employer. Up until earlier this year, I never used my insurance for anything other than routine check-ups. Then, this past winter, I was hospitalized for a severe asthma attack; almost as soon as I was out of the hospital, I received a notice that *former insurance company* was jacking my premium by more than $100/month, from $328 to $430. In the ongoing treatments I required, I came to realize that my exiting plan was pretty terrible. It covered absolutely no diagnostic care; I had to pay 100% of all tests, etc., plus for any doctor visits outside of my annual exam. I never realized how limited my plan was because I'd never really had to use it before, and I had it for a long time. So, I'm getting all these tests and follow up doctor visits, getting billed 100% for them, Also, there was no prescription coverage, and I was put on medicine that costs $300/month. AND I was still paying my insurance premium, and when I turned 45, the raised it again -- to $460, for terrible, useless coverage.

The open enrollment period couldn't open up quickly enough for me.
Through the healthcare.gov website, I was able to get a platinum insurance plan with no deductible, PLUS pretty good dental coverage for $100/month less than the monthly premium for my worthless *former* plan. Now I know that I can continue to receive the medical care I need (and some overdue dental work) without having to worry about it bankrupting me or ruining my credit. Such a relief! I'm glad to know that I will actually be getting what I am paying for. 

And if you don't know what a deductible is, you should know because it is an important part of your health insurance plan. 

So hopefully you know a little more about what you should be considering as you go through the menu of options in your state marketplace or the national marketplace. And if you are like me, I have learned that we should also be checking out our deductibles and out-of-pocket fees on a regular basis. I am guilty of sticking with a plan unless I change jobs or a carrier is dropped.

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. I was compensated by UnitedHealthcare to create this post. 


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