Sunday, February 26, 2012

Which Should You Choose, Private Or Group Health Insurance? by George Hutton

Most people are aware that there have been, and will be some changes in the health care system in the United States. Many people will have to make choices, and these choices will affect the kind of health care they can receive in the future. If you are faced with choosing between group health insurance and private insurance, then this article is for you. I'll go over the benefits and drawbacks of both, so you'll be able to make an easier decision.

Group insurance is usually provided through your employer, although you can also get this group various other groups. The big plus to this kind of plan is that it's the cheapest you can get, and it's pretty easy to qualify for. Another big benefit to group plans is that the rates are fairly stable, if they increase, they do so slowly every year or so.

Some of the downsides of group insurance, is that it can be fairly restrictive. You are usually restricted to the doctors you can see, as well as the treatments and procedures available. In case you need some kind of specialized treatment, this will need to be approved by the health care managers of the plan. This can be frustrating, as it can take several weeks to get a decision.

On the other hand, private insurance is much less restrictive. Many plans allow you to see any doctor, and undergo any procedure, and have a flat schedule of payment. They pay 80 or 70 percent, and you pay the rest. This can be really helpful if you travel a lot, or if you have some specialized medical needs and need frequent specialized treatment.

Of course, one of the main drawbacks to private insurance is that it can be quite expensive. Its' not unheard of to have to pay several hundred dollars a month for this kind of insurance. Another drawback is that it is fairly restrictive, and you'll need to go through a pretty rigorous physical before being accepted. Another big drawback is the rates can change frequently, and you can even be dropped from coverage if the company deems you too big a risk.

To summarize then, group insurance is cheap, but fairly inflexible. You won't have to pay too much, but you may be limited to the kind of health care you receive. Private plans, on the other hand, are fairly flexible, allowing you to go pretty much anywhere, anytime. But they can be incredibly expensive, and hard to qualify for. So based on what's important to you, and how much you can afford, you can now make a better decision.