Make Room in Your Budget for More Healthcare Costs This Year
The new year is an opportunity to set goals, get organized, and make preparations. One area that’s top of mind for many Americans? Finances.
Whether you’re aiming to pay down debt, set savings aside, or stick to a budget in 2020, your healthcare costs need to be a factor in that game plan. Medical and pharmacy expenses are eating a big portion of consumers’ income. And year-over-year, that amount is growing.
One thing is certain, consumers are feeling uncertain about their healthcare. In fact, many insured Americans do not feel financially equipped to fully utilize the healthcare benefits they already have.
· 34% have trouble paying their deductible
· 28% have difficulty paying for their monthly premiums
· 24% struggle to cover the cost of an office visit or their Rx drugs
So, how do you mitigate some of this uncertainty?
Understand Out-of-Pocket Costs
First, make sure you know what it actually costs to utilize your benefits. In addition to premium payments, you’ll have out-of-pocket expenses when you actually use your health insurance. Here’s a quick breakdown of what you to expect*.
Premiums – the amount you pay to have health insurance. You pay a premium just to have coverage
and this amount is usually due monthly. For employer-sponsored insurance, you’re usually sharing the
cost with your employer.
Deductible – the set amount you must pay before the insurance kicks in. This works the same way as a
car insurance deductible. This will be an out-of-pocket expense. Check your insurance plan for more
Copayment – the set dollar amount your pay for a specific healthcare service. These are usually paid at
the time of the service and are out-of-pocket expenses that don’t go towards your deductible amount.
For example, a regular office visit might have a $25 copay or a specialist visit might have a $45 copay.
Coinsurance – these kick in after you’ve met (paid) your deducible amount for the year. Coinsurance is
the percentage you pay for covered healthcare services.
*Out-of-pocket expenses vary depending on the details of your specific health plan. Be sure to visit your health insurance website for specifics about your coverage.
Now, Plan Ahead
Now that you know what you’ll be expected to pay for care, plan ahead. How many trips to the doctor did you take last year? Do you anticipate more this year? Is there ongoing care you’ll need? Do you have dependents to account for?
Try and set aside money for your estimated healthcare costs for 2020. If your premium is pulled directly from your paycheck, you can focus on the anticipated out-of-pocket costs. Are you a HooPayz member?
Login and use our Create a Budget tool! You’ll answer a couple of questions and have a detailed budget generated for you.
Utilize Your Company’s Advocacy Service
Finally, take full advantage of your company’s healthcare advocacy service every step of the way. There’s a lot of waste and mistakes in healthcare. An advocacy service, like HooPayz, can help you save BIG on those out-of-pocket expenses by finding high-quality, affordable care and reviewing your medical bills.