If you’re new to health insurance in the United States, you’ll find it’s expensive. But cost isn’t the only problem for beginners trying to get health insurance. It’s also a complex system with multiple entry points. Since you can potentially get health insurance from many different sources, for example, the government, from your job or university, or from a private insurance company, it’s not always clear where you should start looking when shopping for low-cost health insurance.
Think about how much healthcare you will probably use in the next year, and compare how much it would cost in health insurance premiums and out-of-pocket expenses for each plan you consider. If you rarely go to the doctor, then you are probably better off buying a high-deductible health plan (like a Bronze plan) with a low premium than a more expensive plan with a low deductible.
Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) are low cost health insurance plans available to individuals younger than 65 years of age. Eligibility is determined by your income level. When you’re enrolled you’ll receive help paying your monthly health insurance by Health Insurance Premiums with Tax Credits (HIPTC). These tax credits are used to decrease your monthly payment for your health insurance premium or you can receive your tax credit as a lump sum within your federal tax return. Qualified Health Plans (with or without HIPTC) can be purchased through the Washington Health Plan Finder. There are more than 80 different plans to choose from.
We compared monthly premiums from all Illinois health insurance plans to determine the cheapest policy available in each metal tier and help you get started finding the best policy for your preferred level of coverage. The actual set of insurance companies and health plans offered will change depending on the county you live in, so those listed below may not be available where you live. But we recommend using these as a starting point to assess the benefits and cost sharing you expect for a given level of coverage as compared to a policy's rates.
Health Savings Accounts – These are not health insurance plans but are savings accounts that are designed to be used in conjunction with a high deductible health plan (HDHP). HSA’s can help take the burden off of medical care. Pre-tax dollars go into a special savings account that is used for medical care, prescriptions and some over the counter medical supplies.
People looking for the best health insurance options in Texas can find cheap subsidized policies offered on the Texas health insurance exchange. Currently there are eight companies offering plans on the exchanges, although not all companies offer plans in every county. Overall, the companies with the cheapest health plans in Texas are Celtic Insurance Company (Ambetter), Oscar Health and Molina Healthcare of Texas. Of all the companies servicing Texas, Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS)is the only one operating in all 254 counties in the state. The other insurance carriers are only offering plans in parts of the state.
The insurers and health insurance plans available on the Pennsylvania Health Insurance Marketplace will vary depending on the county you live in. To help you get started finding the best cheap health insurance policy, we identified the cheapest Silver plan in each county in the state. Below, you can see sample monthly premiums for each of the plans based on your family size.
Where you live in Pennsylvania and your income will determine the best cheap health insurance plan available. Pennsylvania expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, so if your household income is up to 138% of the Federal Poverty Level, you'll qualify for this coverage in the state. For those that don't qualify for Medicaid, your best health insurance options will typically be through the state marketplace, particularly if you have a low household income. Many households can qualify for tax subsidies to help lower the cost of health insurance coverage for an exchange plan.
The Medicaid program is now called Washington Apple Health. Children’s Medicaid is called Apple Health for Kids and the adult program is called Apple Health for Adults. Washington Apple Health provides coverage for income eligible adults, pregnant women and children. Eligibility is determined by your income level and household size. For example, an individual would qualify for Medicaid if they are age 19 to 65 and their annual income was less than $16,644, with higher limits for families with children. If your income is higher, you may still be eligible for a Qualified Health Plan.
If you work for a company that offers free benefits, that should be your first option. Employer sponsored coverage, also known as group health coverage, is usually discounted by health insurance companies who are competing for business. On top of the discounted rates, employers usually split the cost with their employees, which makes group coverage one of the cheapest medical insurance options available.
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