How The Prices Of Health Insurance Can Be Lowered
Health Insurance Marketplaces are bodies established to provide the services related to purchase of health plans by the people. The healthcare plans listed are regulated by the government and these policies may qualify for government subsidies. There are various private health care exchanges that also provide insurance policies to the employees of small and medium businesses.
Why there is the need of Health Insurance Marketplaces
They were primarily established to help more people get insured and also to make sure that the health insurers provided such options to the consumers that were cost effective and in accordance with the consumer protection laws. Although they themselves didn’t act as insurers, they decided which companies could provide the insurance services to the consumer via the exchange.
The exchanges ensured that there was transparency in working with the insurance companies and they were held accountable for their decisions. It was also made sure that expensive medical treatments were available to a larger group of people by spreading the risks with costs associated with these treatments across a large group of people.
They made it feasible for people to have an option of their plans other than that of private operators and have a better set of choices to consider.
Working of Health Insurance Marketplaces
Though Health Insurance Marketplaces existed in private market for a long time, with the passing of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2010, these became compulsory in every state. Their functioning is in accordance with this act. Multiple states may join to run a multi-state exchange, or they may have their own individual one. If the state has no such exchange program, the central government may create an exchange in the state to service its citizens.
Every year the marketplace has a fixed enrollment period. Individuals may compare various insurance plans available to them and opt for the one meeting their needs. For small businesses with 100 or fewer employees, Small Business Health Options Program Marketplace or SHOP provides the options for ideal health coverage to their employees. There is no enrollment window for SHOP and an organization can enroll anytime throughout the year.
Benefits of Health Insurance Marketplaces
The governing of policies of the private players as per the set of rules laid down by the government protects the interests of the insured individual. There is no room for discrimination to what the insurer charges on the grounds of gender, health or an existing medical condition. There is no limit on the amount an insurer may spend while giving health benefits to an individual, hence eliminating any financial risks for the insured person.
Insured individuals have access to a wide variety of health benefits and services, including the provision of an ambulance, hospitalization, care for mother and newborn child, rehabilitation, provision of prescription drugs and other such essentials.
It not only reduced the costs for the insured individuals but also gave them an option to find help with their premium payment. A subsidy in the form of an advanced refundable tax credit is given to individuals who buy a plan from an exchange, though it is based on the income of the insured individuals.
The Health Insurance Marketplaces clearly provide more options for an individual looking for a plan and make the market price competitive. They also ensure proper provision of services to the individuals and make sure the private players practice accountability. If you are looking for a great plan, they are the right place to visit.