Ranked consistently as one of the top five healthiest states by the United Health Foundation, New Hampshire residents enjoy a high quality of life. Still, some residents are subject to the same health issues that burden the rest of the country. Whether you’re dealing with a seasonal cold or a more serious disease such as cancer, having the right New Hampshire health insurance is necessary.
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New Hampshire Health Facts
- New Hampshire has ranked as the third healthiest state.
- 26.2% of the population struggles with obesity.
- 19.4% of the population still smokes.
- 8.7% of the population has diabetes.
- The uninsured population increased from 8.5% to 11.3% in the last 10 years.
- Infectious disease decreased from 6.8 to 5.5 per 100,000
- Only 22.5% of the population leads a sedentary lifestyle, one of the lowest in the country.
New Hampshire Health Insurance Plans
Whether you’re considering purchasing individual insurance coverage or group coverage through your employer, there are several different plans you should be aware of. Each plan has different features, and knowing the pros and cons of each will help you determine which is more suitable for your particular needs. Here are a few options that you will currently find:
- Health Maintenance Organization (HMO): With this plan, you choose a primary care physician (PCP) within your network. You have a set monthly amount for all your healthcare needs, but if you want to visit a specialist, you must receive a referral from your PCP.
- Preferred Provider Organization (PPO): Similar to an HMO, you choose a PCP, but if you want to visit another doctor within the network, you don’t need a referral. You can venture outside of the network at an increased cost.
- Point of Service (POS): While this insurance plan also works within a network, you can still receive coverage from whomever you like. For the service to be covered, you must provide receipts and documentation.
If your health plan is a high deductible plan (HDHP), you can pair it with a Health Savings Account (HSA). The HSA works as a medical bank account. The money you deposit into the account is tax-advantaged. You can obtain an HSA through an employer or individually, but just make sure that you have enough money to cover the high deductible, which can start at $1,200.
All health plans will likely include exclusions as well as procedural deductibles, copays and coinsurance. Starting in 2014, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) makes it illegal to deny coverage or charge a higher premium for pre-existing conditions, or to have lifetime limits.
Take Advantage of the Affordable Health Care Act
If you live in New Hampshire, and you have no insurance or you are privately insured, starting October 1, 2013, you can enroll in a health care plan made available through the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Benefits will become effective January 1, 2014. New Hampshire residents can sign up for health coverage through the U.S. Government portal, “healthcare.gov.”
All plans under the ACA provide for a standard set of 10 benefits. Insurers must offer at least these minimum benefits as part of their plans. The plans (bronze, silver, gold, platinum) differ in that they offer different deductibles and out of pocket limits. Plan costs also vary depending on the insurance company providing the coverage.
When you sign up for coverage through the federal exchange, you may qualify for a healthcare subsidy from the Federal government. You can take the subsidy as a yearly credit on your taxes or as a deduction from your monthly premium. If your income is no more than 133 percent of the poverty level, you can sign up for Medicaid benefits, which means you would pay nothing for health benefits.
What Are Your Other Options?
If you don’t qualify for a subsidy under the ACA, you can still sign up for any of the plans under the Health Exchange. The only difference is that you will not get a subsidy.
If you prefer, you can sign up for private health insurance through any of the private insurance companies offering coverage in New Hampshire. Plans offered directly by insurers must still adhere to the standards of the ACA. But the plans offered directly by insurers may have different hospital and doctor networks.
Beware of Limitations and Exclusions
Even though you’ll have a standard set of coverage options, you need to be sure you understand those options and any limitations/exclusions that may be part of your coverage. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- Many policies have benefit maximums on covered conditions. Make sure you know what those maximums are.
- Be aware of the services not specifically listed in the policy as covered services. Your plan will not pay for these services.
- Your insurer will not pay for services or supplies they deem to be unnecessary.
Simple and Understandable Healthcare Options
All health plans must provide a simple, understandable breakdown of how coverage will work in common situations, so if you have a particular health issue and want to know which health plan is best for you, let a Trusted Choice® member agent help you.