Even more ways to save on healthcare
Check out the final installment of our three-part series on how to save money on healthcare.
We love to help folks save on healthcare expenses. In our two prior blogs about saving on healthcare expenses, we gave some advice on choosing health insurance plans and saving into cafeteria plans. In the final blog of the series, we’re looking at additional ways you can cut healthcare costs that you might not know about.
There’s a lot of information to share, so let’s get right to it!
Take care of yourself. By practicing self-care and prevention, as well as taking advantage of routine screenings, you can save money in the long run. Seeking healthcare early when symptoms arise can often keep the bills from being overwhelming the way they would be if you’re not treated early for issues that then worsen.
If your company has a wellness program, take advantage of that perk. Staying at a healthy weight and getting regular exercise will keep your body in good shape so that you can eliminate extra visits to medical providers.
Read your EOBs. When your insurance provider sends you an explanation of benefits (EOB) for your care, go over that form and advocate for yourself if something isn’t right. A recent report by the American Medical Association showed that one in five medical claims submitted to insurance companies are processed incorrectly, so it’s important to file appeals with your insurance company and check back with your clinic if something’s not being paid by insurance.
Get pre-approvals. Always get pre-approval from your insurance company for anything outside of normal care. Making sure you know what your insurance company is going to pay can help you make informed decisions and then budget for the bill.
Go in-network. If your doctor is in-network, your insurance company will reward you with greater savings. Their in-network providers save them a lot of hassle in processing claims because they’re well-versed in how to submit claims properly. That means savings to you, so opt for in-network providers whenever possible.
Save on prescriptions. Ask your doctor if you can switch to generic medicines with the same active ingredient or inquire if there’s a similar medicine that’s less expensive. And if it’s an option, see if you can get your medicine through the mail, which typically offers big savings. Apps like GoodRx® and SingleCare® can often find the cheapest place near you for your meds. It pays to download and locate the cheapest pharmacy for your meds.
Don’t smoke. Smoking is an expensive habit, and not just because of the cost of cigarettes. Health insurance premiums can be up to 50% more for smokers — but more importantly, healthcare costs for smokers at any given age are as much as 40% higher than those for nonsmokers.
Use telehealth options. Got an issue that can be resolved via telehealth? You can save money by logging into a telehealth app and seeing an on-screen doctor for a wide range of less-severe issues: colds and flu, allergies, insect bites, rashes, sore throats, stomach issues, or sprains and strains.
Use urgent care. If something non-life threatening happens outside regular clinic hours, it’s a good idea to use urgent care instead of the emergency room. ER expenses can be very costly, and most issues can be resolved with a visit to urgent care. (If you’re dealing with something life-threatening, however, the ER is where you need to be.)
More ways to save
If you missed Part 1: Choosing the right healthcare coverage or Part 2: Saving in a cafeteria plan, give them a read to learn more ways to save on healthcare costs.
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