Thank you Dignity Health for sponsoring this post about Open Enrollment. Enroll in humankindness.
It’s about that time where companies are holding their Open Enrollment period for benefits. This is the time where I analyze my family’s dental, vision and medical spending and consider making any adjustments to our current plans through my husband’s employer, if needed. Though this might seem like a stressful time, it’s important that you go over your benefits.
Illness is something we all dread, but like it or not, it’s a fact of life. At some point in your life, you will come down with something, and when you do, it would be nice to have the peace of mind knowing that you are in good hands with your healthcare provider.
5 Things to Consider During Open Enrollment
Is everyone covered?
Open Enrollment is the time to make sure everyone in your family is covered. You may have just had a new baby, or just got married/divorced, which means changes need to be made to your health care plan. Now is the time to do it!
Keep in mind that having a doctor you know and trust is a key part to maintaining your health. This Open Enrollment, pay close attention to your physician options. Everyone deserves clinical expertise with humankindness. With your choice of doctors and specialists, you’ll be surrounded by people who truly care about you and your family’s health. So this year during Open Enrollment, choose a plan that includes Dignity Health’s physicians and hospitals. 47% of Californians don’t prioritize doctors when choosing health insurance, even though 70% of that group has a preferred doctor, clinic or practice. It’s important to make sure your preferred physician is in-network before choosing your healthcare plan.
Take Your Time:
According to the infographic below, more than half of Californians, and nearly two-third of millennials, wish they spent more time on Open Enrollment. Nearly one-quarter (22%) of people spend less than an hour on making a decision on health insurance. So it should be no surprise that after Open Enrollment, 55% say they definitely or probably wish they had more opportunity to make a better-informed, more researched decision. More than one-quarter (27%) feel this regret because they wish they had researched more about their preferred doctor/caregiver being in the network. Millennials are more likely than other generations to feel this way, with 63% of them wishing they could have made a better-informed choice.
Deductibles and Out Of Pocket Costs:
Analyze the healthcare plans available to you, paying close attention to your deductibles and out-of-pocket costs. Do you have flat rate co-pays or do you have to pay a co-insurance percentage? Are you someone who visits your doctor often? Someone who doesn’t visit often? You don’t want to be paying an arm and a leg for those daily medications you’ve been prescribed, or for your annual check-ups. Analyze the out-of-pocket costs that your healthcare plans are offering.
This is the number that nobody loves to talk about, but it’s pretty important. On top of considering your out-of-pocket costs, deductibles, in-network physicians, the most important thing (in my opinion) is the monthly premium. How much of your paycheck will you be paying for your family to have healthcare coverage? Are you paying an outrageous amount each month and have crazy-high deductibles and co-pays? It’s time to analyze your costs and potentially switch to a better plan. We recently made the switch from Blue Shield to Kaiser and were able to choose a plan that best suits our family’s needs. My husband works for a small company, so we are somewhat limited on the plans we’re offered, but based on the information we were given, I was able to compare plans and choose the one that made the most sense, financially, for our family.
46% of Californians said they would rather wash the dishes than research insurance plans during open enrollment, 28% would rather deep clean their home, 22% would rather go to the DMV, 21% would rather have to resolve an issue with customer service, 17% would rather file taxes, and 7% would rather get a root canal. It’s not worth the anxiety, guys.
You never know when illness or injury will strike. You can’t live your life in a bubble, so it’s best to be prepared with proper health insurance coverage. Weigh out the benefits versus the out-of-pocket costs, pay attention to your monthly premiums, but most importantly, know your options when it comes to choosing your physician. It’s best to be prepared and face Open Enrollment confidently.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.