Nothing is more important than your health and that of your family. You want the reassurance that in the event of an illness or accident, you’re in safe hands. This is why finding the right health insurance is so important.
While it can seem daunting, finding a good health insurance policy need not be stressful or time-consuming. If you follow these six simple dos and don’ts, you can make sure that you will soon have the right policy for you or your family (and at the right price, too).
1. Do use an insurance comparison site
Price comparison sites have revolutionized the way most of us buy insurance. If you are not yet using a price comparison site to help you purchase insurance, then use one now to help you buy the health insurance you need.
Insurance comparison sites allow you to submit your requirements and basic information to multiple insurers in one go. The comparison site then allows you to compare health insurance quotes from all these insurers on one easy-to-view page. This saves you a lot of valuable time and releases you from the tedium of submitting the same information multiple times on different sites.
It also ensures you can see the lowest possible price. However, this fabulous benefit is not the only reason to use an insurance comparison site. On the same page, you’ll also see an overview of other information critical to your purchase, such as additional benefits each policy may provide.
Insurance comparison sites allow you to make an informed decision quickly and easily. They really are game-changers.
2. Don’t necessarily opt for the cheapest plan
It’s very possible that a price comparison site may show a “bargain” deal and it can be very tempting to hit the button for it straight away. However, make sure you have compared more than just price.
There are other important factors to consider including, most importantly, the level of coverage you are buying. Cheaper plans don’t necessarily mean they provide more basic cover. No matter how healthy you are right now, nobody can foresee the future, so you need to ensure you are fully covered in any eventuality.
You need to be sure that whether you need a family doctor’s advice for treating a stomach upset or you are involved in a serious accident, your healthcare will be provided under the policy.
There are plenty of medical situations where being underinsured can be as useless as not being insured at all. It is wise to see to it that you and your whole family have access to the following:
- A family or general doctor
- In-patient hospital treatment
- Emergency treatment
- Diagnostic tests
- Maternity services
- Vaccines and immunizations
- Prescription drugs
Finally, different insurers may offer different incentives or perks. It is worth considering which of these are of any value to you or your family, if at all.
3. Do check available healthcare providers
Before you make a final decision, be sure you know which healthcare providers will be available to you with the policies you are considering. Hospitals, clinics and pharmacies available to you are likely to be listed as “in-network providers.” If you have preferences for certain facilities double-check if you will still be able to use them.
4. Don’t get caught up on excess, deductibles or co-insurance costs
There may also be other significant differences between policies, particularly contributions you may still need to make to medical bills. These may be called “excess,” “deductibles” or “co-insurance costs.” You could be asked to pay a fixed sum or a percentage of the bill each time you claim on the policy.
To prevent any nasty surprises, before you purchase a policy, be sure you fully understand the costs you will be liable for any time you make a claim.
5. Do be honest about your medical background
When you purchase a health insurance policy, you will need to provide a full medical history for yourself and anyone else included in the policy. It’s really important that this is totally accurate. If your insurer discovers false or missing information, it can invalidate your policy. This could potentially mean you are liable for large medical bills.
Taking the time to fill out the forms correctly is a must. Even if you feel some information may be unimportant or irrelevant, you should still include it. It’s not worth the risk of being uninsured.
6. Don’t skip the small print
It can be tedious trawling through the small print, but it’s well worth doing. This is the only way you can ensure the policy fully covers your needs. On close examination, you may also find it provides you with extra services you don’t need, and in removing these services, you may be able to negotiate a lower premium.
Following these six dos and don’ts should make buying health insurance simpler. Best of all, you’ll have the peace of mind that for the next year, you and your family are taken care of, no matter what life throws at you.
Erin Daniyel is the VP for Revenue Operations at Rubicon Project and spokesperson for CompareDubai, an online comparison portal that provides customers with a one-stop platform to compare insurance quotes offered within the UAE. CompareDubai delivers quotations from a number of insurance providers covering a range of products, from Car Insurance to Motorbike, Yacht and Boat, Medical, Life, Business and Home Insurance.