The Hidden Costs of Health Insurance

Health insurance has always been a bit of a thorny issue, with health insurance providers routinely offering customers varying rates and fluctuating terms of coverage. In fact, if you look up health insurance rates by ZIP code, you will most likely find that there is a great deal of disparity based simply on where you live. But why should there be such a difference? After all, regardless of what state you are in, you still need the same basic health care as everyone else. The reason for this disparity really has to do with state mandated minimums, but there are other factors that affect the cost of your health coverage as well.

  • State Guidelines

Every state has its own requirements when it comes to providing a minimum standard of health care and coverage. Depending on where you live, this can make a great difference to the types of health premiums you can expect to pay. While all health insurance providers have to cover basic health maintenance costs, such as annual doctor’s visits and a certain amount of your prescription costs, premiums can still vary significantly from state to state.

  • Health Conditions

Even if you have a pre-existing health condition, you still have the right to adequate health care coverage. Most health insurance providers will be happy to work with you to ensure that you get all the coverage you need, but the chances are that you will have pay much higher premiums. There is no way to compare insurance rates for specific forms of health coverage – only your insurer can tell you how much your coverage will cost.

  • Our Litigious Society

Part of the differentiation in health insurance rates by ZIP code stems from the sad fact that we live in a society where people are ever ready to sue each other. And insurance malpractice suits unfortunately rank high on the long list of private litigation suits that hit the courts each year. As with everything else, each state is different when it comes to the basic costs of litigation. Your health insurer will have to handle the litigation costs if you choose to sue them for poor coverage or refusing to allow you access to vital medical care. If the costs of litigation are generally higher in your state, you can definitely expect to see higher base premiums.

  • Youth Counts

While it might seem unfair to a lot of us, everyone knows that how old you are can easily affect the kinds of health insurance premiums you will have to pay. All you have to do is compare insurance rates across age groups to see how true this is. The reason for this disparity has everything to do with risk mitigation. No insurance company is thrilled about paying out huge claims and a younger person who is in reasonably good health will most probably not make any major claims on their policy. Given this, younger people who are non-smokers and have no pre-existing health conditions are often eligible for lower health insurance premiums than older applicants.

The bottom line is that adequate health insurance is crucial to the health and well-being of you and your family. You can get important information about the general cost of health insurance in your area if you compare insurance rates online, but the best option in terms of working out your costs is to speak directly with an insurance agent.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *