Wednesday, February 09, 2011

How Health Insurance Companies Rip You Off

Health insurance companies are robbing you blind. Used car sales tactics like bait and switch are rampant. They trick you when you buy. They trick you when you renew, and you won't know it until it is too late.

Every health insurance company has these plans. They look nice. They are relatively inexpensive. They appear to cover everything, so what's not to love?

These sneaky plans do not cover prescription drugs.

So what (you may say)? I don't use medication.

True, but health insurance is not designed for medical conditions you currently have but those that develop after the coverage is in force. If you currently have a treatable health condition, the premium or policy is designed to make you self insure that condition and they take care of the new stuff only.

Bet you didn't know that, did you?

All health insurance companies including Blue Cross, Humana, United Healthcare and others have plans that do not cover prescription drugs . . . EVER.

If you purchased health insurance direct from a carrier, or through an online direct marketing agency you may have bought one of these financial death trap plans and did not realize it. There are also some misinformed agents, as well as some just out to make a quick buck, that will push these plans on you if you are not careful.

One thing health insurance companies do at renewal is offer you a way to save money by making a change in your plan. One of the options they will put forth is a plan that does not cover prescription drugs. Often you can save 7 - 11% in premiums by opting for one of these plans.

But what happens when your health changes and you need a drug?

You pay for it.

Every time you fill the prescription, you pay and pay and pay. The carrier never opens their wallet and pays a dime toward the cost of your medication.


And drugs can be quite expensive. I have clients with drug costs in excess of $5,000 per month but they only pay a fraction of that. Many pay nothing for their drugs beyond the first couple of months of the year.

Before you buy or renew any major medical plan with any health insurance company, make sure you have not bought a financial snake that will come back and bite you.
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