If you’re like many people, your health plan is one of the benefits of your job. You may not have a lot of choice about which insurance company to use with such a plan, but there are still ways to maximize the coverage your employer provides, and save yourself some cash – an important opportunity when even corporate health insurance plans are getting more and more expensive.
- Pick your plan carefully. When you first enroll in the employee benefits program, or when there’s an open enrollment that allows you to tweak your coverage, you’ll probably be able to chose between different providers and levels of coverage. Be sure to analyze the different deductibles, co-payments, caps on out-of-pocket expenses, whether or not there’s prescription coverage, and what the lifetime maximum benefits are. Make your decision based on all of these factors, and on what your access to quality care will be.
- Take a good look at what your medical needs really are. If you’re a single person in excellent health, go for lower deductibles and higher co-payments. If you have chronic health issues (like asthma, allergies, or diabetes) or children, choosing lower co-payments might be easier on your finances, even if that means a higher deductible.
- Consider a flexible spending account. Flexible spending accounts are sort of like savings accounts that are designated for health care, but the money is pulled from your paycheck before taxes are taken out. You can use them to pay any number of health-care expenses, from eyeglasses or contact lenses to chiropractic care, but the catch is that any money you haven’t used by the end of the year is considered forfeit.
These are just a few of the ways you can get more out of your corporate health insurance. Your company may also offer health incentives that improve your physical condition and will help you save money on health insurance, albeit indirectly.