Major Medical Insurance and the Risk of Being Underinsured

  • September 12, 2016
  • |Quartz
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If you're thinking of getting major medical insurance in Madison, WI you should first understand the risks of high deductible plans.
Considering a major medical insurance plan? Understand the potential risks of being underinsured with high deductibles before choosing a plan.


Ever feel like the deductible on your major medical insurance is so high you might as well pay medical costs out-of-pocket? According to a 2014 study1, about 31 million U.S. citizens were underinsured. One of the definitions of being underinsured is having a deductible that is five percent or more of your household income. Of those who participated in the study, half of all underinsured adults reported that they had problems with debt and high medical bills. Another 44 percent said that sometimes they don't get the healthcare they need because of the high costs.


When people don't get the health care they need because their insurance doesn’t cover costs, preventable health problems increase. The Commonwealth Fund's study results show the correlation. It also shows the steadily increasing numbers of underinsured Americans. This data makes it clear that more people than ever are underinsured. That data also shows much higher levels of underinsurance for those who purchased their own individual health care plans.


The same study shows that underinsured people often end up with more financial trouble –

  • 44 percent of underinsured Americans watched their credit scores drop
  • 47 percent emptied their savings accounts
  • 9 percent took out a mortgage to pay medical bills
  • 7 percent filed for bankruptcy

Those with preexisting health problems are more likely to be underinsured. The same goes for those with government benefits like Medicare or Medicaid. For a more detailed breakdown of these findings, The Commonwealth Fund offers a wealth of information.


It's possible to take steps now to help make sure you don't become an "underinsured" statistic.  A great time to start is  when you're shopping for a new health plan. Take the time to know your policy inside and out. If you're considering a major medical insurance plan, look beyond just the monthly premium cost. Be sure to and factor in the costs of getting care. Try to avoid deductibles that are too high for your budget; more often than not, they're associated with being underinsured. For more information, feel free to contact us at 608.644.3430. Or you can get quotes for health plans in Wisconsin at a variety of price points right now. We'll help you make sure you have the perfect policy to give you the coverage you need and financial peace of mind. 


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