Health Insurance Wisdom

Charles Goodman Group: Professional Insurance Agency in Armonk NY

Health insurance can be complicated, and you may not know how to avoid spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on unnecessary charges. You probably already know that your deductible is the amount of money you must pay each year before your insurer starts to cover your medical bills. However, you may not know that some costs are covered before you meet your deductible and that you can avoid these out-of-pocket expenses by steering clear of emergency rooms, out-of-network hospitals and other health care providers not covered by your insurer, if possible. An Armonk insurance agent can give you details on choosing the best providers in your network and carefully planning trips out of your network when necessary.

For example, you may have to see a specialist outside your network for an unusual procedure. Another reason you might not be able to avoid leaving your network is when a surgeon in your network operates on you but works with a doctor, such as an anesthesiologist or radiologist, not approved by your insurer. In this case, you may be able to negotiate with the doctors or the hospital to reduce the rates they charge.

An insurance agent from the Charles Goodman Group of Armonk NY would be happy to answer any question you have about life insurance or health insurance.

Your insurer has an agreement with all the health care providers in your network and is often able to negotiate the rates they charge to a substantially lower amount. It can’t negotiate with providers outside your network, and you must pay the difference between what they charge and what your insurer will cover.

When you need medical attention, you can usually save a considerable amount of money by visiting a doctor’s office rather than a hospital or emergency room. Hospitals charge significantly more for the use of their equipment than clinics or doctor’s offices charge, and doctor’s visits are covered by your copay amount, which is typically $25 to $50, compared to your deductible, which can be as much as $4,000. If you need outpatient surgery, X-rays or lab tests, try to get these services from a doctor’s office or clinic before going to a hospital.

Some medication costs less off your insurance than on it. For example, many drugs that were once prescription-only but are now offered over the counter, such as drugs for headaches, sleeplessness, heartburn and joint pain, cost less without a prescription. You can also save a substantial amount of money by buying generic prescription drugs rather than name-brand drugs. Your insurer gives you a Summary of Benefits and Coverage that outlines all the payments you’re entitled to as well as your copay and deductible amounts.