Thursday, September 23, 2010

As you shop for health insurance

In honor of the new health care policy beginning to take effect, I thought I would write a few lines to help those who may now find themselves in the market to purchase health insurance.

One of the first things you will learn is they charge by the pound. After your age, the next questions ask will be height and weight. The skinner you are, up to a point, the cheaper your insurance will be if all other items are equal. It pays to get and stay in shape, not only for your health but also for your pocket book.

If you use tobacco in any form, that is going to cost you too. You will be paying for this pleasure not just in the form of taxes on nicotine containing products, but your health insurance premiums will take a definite jump. Most companies require that you be tobacco free for two years to get a savings.

If you are under the age of nineteen, insurance companies can no longer deny you coverage if you have a pre-existing condition. What the insurance company can do is charge you a higher premium for coverage. That seems to be a recurrening theme: Increasing insurance premiums.

Under the new law, in case you haven't figured it out, by the year 2014 you will be compelled to purchase insurance if you cannot get it through your job or a social service agency (Medicare or Medicaid). However, when you purchase an individual policy it is going to cost you a lot more money than it would have previously. The average premiums will take a 20 to 40 percent jump. This is to cover the cost of manditory preventative care.

Who are the big winners in the new health care policy? I believe it is obvious. The industry with the biggest lobby in Washington and also probably your state capitol: Insurance companies.
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