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Health Insurance Basics

4 Things Millennials Must Know About Health Insurance

December 09, 2016

If you’re one of the 83 millennials living in the U.S. today, the idea of getting sick is likely the last thing on your mind. So you may wonder why it’s important to spend your hard-earned money on something like health insurance.

Having a health plan covers more than just the costs of getting sick. It’s also about those unexpected incidents that can quickly add up to major bills. Things like a night out on the town with friends that yields a sprained ankle. Even health-conscious activities like biking or running can land you in the ER. The Affordable Care Act allows young adults to stay on their parents plan until twenty-six. If you’re no longer on your parents plan, those doctor visits and prescriptions that covered before, now come with costs that can add up quickly.

Let’s look at 4 key things you need to know before choosing your health insurance:

  1. Depending on your income, you may be able to receive a break on what you pay. If you earn less than $47,000, you’ll pay less for your plan.
  2. Look for a plan that suits your needs – not just one with the lowest premium. Since you may have student loans, credit card debt and other expenses, the cost of a healthcare premium is often a big concern. However, choosing a low-cost plan that doesn’t provide coverage suited to your health needs could cost you more in the end.
  3. While it may seem that you’re in great health, you still want to take advantage of preventive care such as annual checkups and routine physicals. Some of the great things about the ACA are the free annual checkups and a flu shot.
  4. Make sure the health plan you choose includes the doctors and hospitals you want, because using doctors outside your plan’s network (approved doctor list) can be very expensive.

Failing to enroll in a plan now comes with a tax penalty. Also, the unexpected costs of not having a health plan can be financially disastrous. It’s more important than ever to understand the benefits of having a health plan – and knowing how to make the most of it.