Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Three Things to Remember During Open Enrollment

It’s that time of year: Falling leaves, football and pumpkin-flavored treats are everywhere. It’s also time for you to choose your 2017 healthcare coverage. Here are three considerations to keep in mind during open enrollment season.

1. Don’t procrastinate.
Open enrollment is (usually) the only time during the year when you can update your health coverage.

If you plan to obtain health coverage through your employer, keep an eye out for your options and selection deadlines. You may only have a couple weeks to change your coverage.

If you don’t have access to health coverage through an employer, you may be looking to the Health Insurance Marketplace. You have until Jan. 31, 2017 to make your selection.

2. Do some homework.
Once you select your coverage for the year, you can only make changes if you experience a big life event, such as getting married or having a baby.

So, take time to sort through your health expenses from the past year. What did you pay for doctor visits? Prescriptions? Was the coverage you selected sufficient?

Think about your medical history and current status – and those of your spouse and kids, if applicable. Do you expect to take more or less trips to the doctor in 2017? If frequent office visits are a possibility, you may want to select more comprehensive coverage.

Also, before you choose your plan, make sure your preferred doctors are in-network. This will save you money each time you do see your doctor(s). (Learn more ways to maximize your healthcare dollars here!)

3. Double check your options.
It may be tempting to continue with the same benefits you had last year. However, plans often change. Sometimes there are new or discontinued options, price changes and different in-network providers. Check to see what’s different from last year’s selection before finalizing your decision.

If you’re currently seeking health insurance, visit now through Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017 to explore your options.