Wintertime spending can be a lot to manage. Holiday shopping, food shopping, and all types of additional shopping can put a big dent in your budget. In extreme cases, some patients may decide to forgo necessary healthcare services if they are budget strapped!
Neglecting any healthcare services that you may need can lead to further health complications that cost even more money to treat or manage. That is why effective healthcare budgeting is crucial to ensuring that you remain healthy and happy this winter season!
Healthcare doesn’t have to be a budget-breaker for most patients. In fact, there are affordable ways to get the healthcare services you need ASAP!
Consider your total healthcare costs
The first step is to make a list of the medical services that you will absolutely need in the coming months or year. A dedicated list of costs and total budget can help inform you on the types of providers to look for, find cost-effective healthcare alternatives, and determine the type of healthcare plan you will need. Which ties into the second aspect of effective healthcare budgeting:
Understand the breakdown of your insurance plan
Insurance plans aren’t always the easiest to understand, regardless of whether you have work-sponsored insurance, private, or public healthcare coverage. Most patients pay a premium to maintain coverage without realizing the other expenses. These include:
- Premiums: the monthly amount that a patient pays to maintain coverage.
- Deductible: the total amount you pay for covered services until you hit a set amount. For example, a plan with a deductible of $9000 would begin to cover all healthcare expenses once you hit that threshold.
- Co-pay: the amount you pay for a service after you’ve hit your deductible.
- Co-insurance: how much you pay for services after a deductible. Some health plans require co-insurance for certain services, such as a 50-50 split on costs.
- Service rate: the set rate for a provider’s services, based on how much your plan can discount services.
Find a plan that fits in your budget based on the deductible and premiums. For example, some health plans have a high-deductible by a low monthly premium, which is useful for healthy patients without a lot of expenses. Conversely, a patient with daily medical ailments may benefit from a lower deductible but a higher premium plan. Consult your plan administrator to find a plan that fits for you!
Find cheaper healthcare alternatives to traditional providers!
Using medical services such as urgent care can help patients save money on their total medical costs! Affordable urgent care services like the ones provided by AFC Urgent Care Waltham can provide preventive care, x-rays, injury treatment, and more for an affordable rate that is accepted by most insurance providers!