Types of Plans

  • A PPO (Preferred Provider Organization) creates a network of preferred doctors and hospitals who sign a contract to provide services to members at a discounted rate. You can see any doctor in the network at the discounted rate. Your co-pay will cover certain basic care, like doctor visits or Rx, then you will probably have an annual deductible to pay before the insurance company starts covering the rest of your medical bills.
  • An HMO (Health Maintenance Organization) plan provides lower out-of-pocket healthcare expenses, but with that less flexibility in the choice of physicians or hospitals than a PPO. As a member of an HMO, you'll have to choose a primary care physician (PCP) to take care of most of your healthcare needs. You'll likely have coverage for a broader range of preventive healthcare services and with a lower copay, before having to pay a deductible, but before you can see a specialist, you'll need to obtain a referral from your PCP.
  • A high deductible health plan (HDHP) is ideally suited for people who don’t visit the doctor much and just need insurance in case of an unexpected medical event. Just like it’s called, your deductible is higher, but typically this is balanced with a lower monthly premium. HDHP members are entitled to open a health savings account, which is somewhat like retirement savings that you can tap into for medical expenses.

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