When shopping for health insurance it is important to be aware of what the different types of plans offer in terms of benefits.
In today’s world, post Affordable Care Act, there are an abundance of plan options available and the amount of information that one must come in contact with to truly understand how these plans work can become overwhelming to the average person. Especially when they’re not use to processing this type of information on the daily. The most overwhelming part is the fact that health benefits are an essential resource in living but It doesn’t have to be as difficult as we think.
There are people out there that can do this work for us and they’re called Health Insurance Agents. Health Insurance Agents have to be licensed with the state (that they’re planning to sell in) and certified with the carrier that you wish to buy from so by default they have to be educated about health insurance plans with which ever carrier they certify with. Electing a health insurance agent is free of charge to you but keep in mind that health insurance agents work solely off of commission—meaning they make money when you pay your premium every month. So, if you’re not serious about purchasing a plan and keeping insurance then it’s probably not best for you to elect an agent as it would be a waste of their time and most agents only sell insurance so it’s their bread and butter. It would be like you going to work and not getting paid.
Keep In Mind:
Insurance agents want to help you first and foremost. If you don’t believe this to be the case with the agent that you’re dealing with, abort ship and find a new agent ASAP! Also, remember to have faith in your agent. You elected them for help in the first place so be patient and work with them if you experience an administrative issue with your health plan.
I.E: Effective date corrections, billing, and general coverage issues for yourself and your family.
I see many situations where something happens with a member’s health plan and the member attempts to get the problem fixed themselves without first communicating with their agent to see if he/she can help them. Typically, it worsens the situation and the member then as a last resort reaches out to the agent but almost always fail to mention that they attempted to fix the problem by going directly to the carrier first. If you elect an agent then it is YOUR job to continue working with them throughout the duration of which you have that health plan, simply because the agent has insider knowledge of how the industry works because it’s their job. If you don’t think you’re capable of keeping your agent in the loop when things go awry, then it is probably not in your best interest to elect an agent but then you’re responsible for keeping up with your plan and it is your responsibility to educate yourself on how your plan works with your health care provider. Either way, educate yourselves people and always conduct research on a person before doing business with them!
Stay Ambitious, Stay Motivated!