Health insurance in the United States is predominantly privatized, with almost 60% of Americans getting their insurance through a private health insurance company. The remaining Americans are either going uninsured or using public health insurance programs. Not everyone who can’t afford sufficient private health insurance will qualify for public health insurance; in fact, most won’t. This means that the majority of Americans are under-insured or not insured at all. Below is a more in-depth look into how both the private and public health insurance systems work.
Private Health Insurance
Health insurance in the United States is, for the most part, owned and operated by private companies. While there are many types of private health insurance plans, they can all be grouped into 3 larger categories:
Fee-For-Service (Traditional Private Health Insurance); Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs); Preferred Provider Organizations (PPOs).
Fee-For-Service is private health insurance that requires you to pay monthly premiums to your insurance company, which will cover most of your health costs. You will then be required to pay extra for certain services.
Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) are prepaid health plans. You pay monthly premiums, but unlike fee-for-service you must receive your health care directly from their facilities. You can get an HMO Insurance Quote here.
Preferred Provider Organizations (PPOs) are health insurance where you pay a monthly premium, along with a small co payment when you visit the doctor. This type of plan limits the doctors and medical facilities you can use.
Public Health Insurance
Publicly funded health insurance is available to senior citizens and low-income individuals and families, if they meet certain requirements. The primary vehicles for public health insurance are Medicare and Medicaid. But there may be additional health insurance funding provided in your area. To get public health insurance you must apply.
Medicare is a federally administered program that provides health insurance for senior citizens and certain disabled people. This health insurance covers medical expenses such as doctor’s visits, hospital stays, drugs and other treatment.
Medicaid is administered by each individual state, but is funded by both the state and federal government. This public health insurance program covers very low income individuals and their families who normally need to be below the national poverty line. It covers hospital and doctor’s visits, prenatal care, emergency room visits, drugs and other treatments.
To find out how much health insurance you should have for your family’s needs, you should use get a private health insurance quote that can quickly tell you the amount of health coverage that you need. This will help to ensure that you aren’t left paying astronomical bills for uncovered health procedures by prioritizing for what health costs you need the most coverage.