Despite the ever-rising healthcare costs, good physical and mental health isn’t an option anyone could do without. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce your hospital bills and out-of-pocket medical expenses when you’re taken ill or injured. Take a look at these cost-saving measures that you can adopt and still access the care you need.
1. Reduce Your Drug Costs
Not all prescription medication is expensive. There are cheaper alternatives you can consider to save money. For example:
- Generic drugs are usually as effective, safe, and strong as their branded alternatives despite costing less. Ask your doctor if you can use generic medicines to treat your condition.
- For every type of drug to treat a specific health condition, there are different brands that don’t necessarily cost the same. For example, you may ask your doctor if you can use a cheaper antibiotic to treat an infection.
- Order your drugs through the mail whenever possible.
Remember to always finish your prescribed dose to avoid costly complications in the future.
2. Take Advantage of Coverage Benefits
Some health plan benefits include:
- Free routine medical exams to check and detect health issues for early and effective treatment
- Prenatal care when pregnant to optimize your health and your baby’s
- A health advocate, if available, to help you take full advantage of your benefits
- A case manager, if supported, to help with the management of complex health issues like heart disease
- Tap into free or discounted care, such as protective eyewear or fitness center membership
3. Always Have a Plan for Emergency or Urgent Care
Not all injuries or symptoms warrant a visit to the emergency room, which usually costs more than treatment at an urgent care clinic. To save time and money, have a plan for where to go to get medical help in such scenarios. Keep the following in mind when preparing your plan:
You must be able to recognize a medical emergency, such as trouble breathing, unconsciousness, or bleeding. A life-threatening situation, including one that affects an unborn baby, usually warrants emergency care.
Go to an urgent care center for any medical situation that can’t wait until a doctor’s appointment, like a dog bite or bladder infection.
4. Take Advantage of In-network Rates
Health insurance companies usually have an exclusive contract with a network of practitioners and providers. With their networks, they negotiate lower rates on behalf of their clients (policyholders). If you look at your health plan’s Evidence of Coverage (EOC), you’ll notice that you’ll pay less out of pocket when you’re treated in a network hospital for certain covered issues. Taking full advantage of this special arrangement between your insurer and health providers can yield major cost savings over the long run.
5. Pick the Right Health Plans for Your Needs
Your health needs (and your family’s) determine the amount of coverage you should purchase. A more expensive plan gives you more health coverage, which may be necessary when you have a health problem that warrants ongoing management or treatment. On the other hand, if you only need coverage for occasional, unexpected illnesses or injuries, you may opt for a plan with a higher deductible. Such a policy will be cheaper and might enable you to save money. Also, make sure to compare coverage for prescription medicines.
These are some of the practical ways to get quality healthcare and optimize your overall wellness without breaking the bank. An appropriate health plan is an important part of this, and here at Hoffman Brown Company, we can help you get the right coverage for your needs and budget. Contact us today to get started on your personalized health insurance!