Health Plans include individual as well as group health insurance. Personal health insurance is an option for the self-employed, and employees of small companies that do not offer group health coverage. An individual health insurance policy allows one to tailor a plan to fit specific health and financial needs from a health insurance company of their choice.

Shop carefully, and compare health insurance quotes from several health insurers. Premium rates can vary considerably on individual, personal health insurance policies since these plans can include and exclude a number of options according to a consumers personal desires. There are many options available to individual health insurance customers that groups are not offered. An individual can choose the amounts and types of coverage, the amount of the deductible, and the amount of the co-pay.

health plansIndividual premiums can be much higher than group rates if the policy holder has pre-existing conditions. But, a person in good health who doesn’t drink or smoke may find the cost to be surprisingly low and affordable. In deciding on a policy, consider what what benefits are paid and what medical services are covered, and how much you will have to pay in coinsurance and deductibles. You can keep premiums down by choosing a higher deductible.

The federal government has made it easier to purchase and keep personal health insurance under certain situations. If you have left or lost a job where you had group health insurance, or had another health insurance plan for more than 18 months without a lapse of more than 2 months, COBRA and HIPAA are federal laws that will continue your and your family’s health care protection.

Group health plans are a valuable fringe benefit for employees, and a great bargaining chip for employers. The average employer pays a premium of about $4,800 per year for each individual employee. If the group health insurance coverage includes the employee’s family, the premium is about $17, 700 annually for a family of four. Employers also have an option to join the governments group health insurance plan (COBRA) at premium rates of $350 per month.

If the event that you have not been covered under a group health plan and have found it difficult to get health insurance coverage on your own, check with your state insurance department and find out if your state has an insurance risk pool. Similar to risk pools that states have for car insurance, these programs can provide health insurance for people who have not been able to get it elsewhere.

Individuals 65 years and older can purchase Medicare supplemental health plans within six months after enrolling in Medicare without worrying about being denied or excluded for pre-existing medical problems.

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