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Where to find cheap (affordable) health insurance?

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Where to find cheap (affordable) health insurance?

Old 05-20-06, 02:19 PM
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Where to find cheap (affordable) health insurance?

I'm trying to find health insurance for my girlfriend. The details: She recently moved in with me in NYC, graduated from college about 6 months ago, is currently looking for a professional job (ie unemployed atm) and is 23 yrs old.

I've done a few internet quotes but have not been impressed at all. The average quote was in the $320.s or higher a month. Since we are both young and she doesn't have a job that is a little steep for our budget.

She is in good shape, non-smoker, etc. However, her immune system is pretty weak so she is prone to the flu and occasional ear ache. Normally she just deals with it / rides it out, but that sucks and it would be good to be checkout every now and then.

Anyone have knowledge or advice on where to look?

Obviously we both GREATLY appreciate any info!
Old 05-20-06, 02:37 PM
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I would probably recommend that you buy a very high deductible insurance. Health insurance afterall is for things you can't afford. What you can't afford is if she were to get seriously injured with a $30,000 hospital bill.

I would look into a health plan that has a deductible in the $5,000 range. Yes, $5,000 is a lot of money for somebody coming right out of college, but it isn't THAT much money.

Otherwise, if you get a $500-$1000 deductible plan, you're going to get raped.

Hard.

Twice.
Old 05-20-06, 05:06 PM
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i second that. get an insurance policy with high deductible, possibly one with no office visit coverage, assuming she doesn't see the doctor that much.
Old 05-20-06, 07:45 PM
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We've gone through http://www.ehealthinsurance.com for my wife's insurance. It gives you some different plans and options. It's worth a look.
Old 05-20-06, 10:36 PM
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Appreciate the replies. I'll give the website a go. As far as the DR. visits, I was hoping to get that on the list so the minor things can be looked at / solutions found. She has the flu (or symptoms) fairly often, so I wanted to make sure she had access just incase it's anything that needs to be dealt with down the road. Kinda like a car, if you ignore the little things - they'll come up in a hell of a way later.
Old 05-21-06, 02:12 AM
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Has she tried Medicaid? There's nothing to be ashamed of for applying. She may just qualify
Old 05-21-06, 04:12 PM
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Check with your local Chamber of Commerce. I joined and was able to get their group rate for Blue Cross Blue Shield; saved me about $170/month ($310 instead of $480). You only have to stay with the COC one year, and you can still stick with the group plan.
Old 05-21-06, 09:12 PM
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get married and she can get on yours
Old 05-21-06, 11:22 PM
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Originally Posted by J-Dubya
get married and she can get on yours
Heh what happened to the good ole days of wed-lock?

Unfortunately my health insurance consists of oatmeal for breakfast. I've always been pretty healthy and lucky, thus I'm waiting until grad school ends and the employer deems me worthy enough for longevity. It's her immune system and proneness to illness that I'm more concerned about.

The COC thing is a great idea. I love the creativity of this site!
Old 05-22-06, 02:13 AM
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Move to Canada to get free health insurance!
Old 05-22-06, 07:32 AM
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Originally Posted by scarab007
Appreciate the replies. I'll give the website a go. As far as the DR. visits, I was hoping to get that on the list so the minor things can be looked at / solutions found. She has the flu (or symptoms) fairly often, so I wanted to make sure she had access just incase it's anything that needs to be dealt with down the road. Kinda like a car, if you ignore the little things - they'll come up in a hell of a way later.
Think about it this way. Suppose you pay $300 a month for 12 months. That is $3600 right out of your pocket. With that type of insurance, I imagine there would be a $50-100 deductible, maybe more.

Now, if a doctor charges $175 for the sniffles and to get a script, that would mean your girlfriend would have to visit the doctor somewhere around 20 times before you broke even between the two cases. You could easily purchase the higher deductible insurance plan, pay for the office visits and still come out ahead.

Also, I've never done this, but I've read about people talking their doctors into lower office visit fees because it's coming out of their pockets. Basically you can give the doctor a sob story about how you have a high deductible insurance plan and you'd appreciate it if they could lower the fee. Imagine if you could get $75/visit from the doctor. You'd save a LOT more than you were even expecting.

What would suck royal nuts is if your girlfriend were to get sick and the total bill comes out to $4999. That would be all out of pocket and there is nothing you could do. That is the risk you take when you buy insurance, but insurance afterall is for things you really *can't* afford.
Old 05-22-06, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by ChiTownAbs, Inc
What would suck royal nuts is if your girlfriend were to get sick and the total bill comes out to $4999. That would be all out of pocket and there is nothing you could do. That is the risk you take when you buy insurance, but insurance afterall is for things you really *can't* afford.
Keep in mind that even with a $5000 deductible, you pay that $5K plus the premiums. Meeting your deductible only entitles you to pay the co-payment amount. If your total bills are $5025, you still pay the first $5K in full plus (your co-payment percentage)* 25.

If there is some set amount you cannot afford period, look into the maximum out of pocket expenses for whatever plan you're interested in and choose accordingly. Definitely do the math.
Old 05-22-06, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by [email protected]
Check with your local Chamber of Commerce. I joined and was able to get their group rate for Blue Cross Blue Shield; saved me about $170/month ($310 instead of $480). You only have to stay with the COC one year, and you can still stick with the group plan.

This is an interesting idea. Do you know if the Group plan you got covered pre-existing conditions after a certain amount of time (i.e 30, 60, or 90 days)? I will have to check this out.
Old 05-22-06, 09:32 PM
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Originally Posted by dave-o
This is an interesting idea. Do you know if the Group plan you got covered pre-existing conditions after a certain amount of time (i.e 30, 60, or 90 days)? I will have to check this out.
Don't know offhand about pre-existing conditions. And every state probably has different laws about it, so whatever is true in MA may not be true wherever you are anyways....
Old 05-22-06, 11:48 PM
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Originally Posted by [email protected]
Don't know offhand about pre-existing conditions. And every state probably has different laws about it, so whatever is true in MA may not be true wherever you are anyways....
Cool, thanks for the info though. I called my chamber of commerce and they are sending me a packet on their insurance (also through BCBS). I would have never thought of going through them...
Old 05-24-06, 12:01 PM
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Check out the local community college. They offer really cheap health insurance. She can see student health for her colds. Usually she only needs a class or two to qualify. I have a friend who is self employed and takes PE classes every semester just for the insurance.
Old 05-26-06, 11:09 AM
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I'm in a similar boat as your Girlfriend, and I am direct enrolled in a plan with blue cross and blue shield, call Afford a Blue. While not the greatest it is pretty damn good for the 90$ a month I pay. I get five vists to the doctor a year with a 20$ cycle, I pay the first 100$ for perscriptions then they pay the rest. I'm not sure exactly, but I think I pay a 1000 and they pay the rest for hospitals. That 90 aslo covers dental, which only covers 2 cleanings completely. Anything else you are fucked.

Like I say it's not the greatest but pretty good, and It is a month to month plan that you can drop on a dime, also since it is BCBS, you can pretty much go to who you want.

Hopefully this link will work:

http://www.bcbsks.com/product_choice...e.htm?mnu=in3&

The big thing though is that I live in Kansas, so I'm not sure what they have in NY, but definetly worth taking a Look at IMO.
Old 05-26-06, 11:42 AM
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Wow, thanks guys! Community college is a great idea, especially since they are almost everywhere and anyone can enroll. The rates for BC are perfect, I'm going to go check them out now - hopefully NY doesn't kill this option.
Old 05-26-06, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by DAC
Has she tried Medicaid? There's nothing to be ashamed of for applying. She may just qualify
single able bodied person in their 20's? Not in any medicaid program I administered...

Edit: she should actually try to do things to boost her immune system, in any case.
Old 05-27-06, 12:42 AM
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"Only college you can go to with a GED is a community college- you know why that is? They be lettin all kinds of people in- crack head,prostututes,drug dealers-COME ON IN!!!"
Old 05-27-06, 09:31 AM
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Lol Chitown.

LurkerDan, regarding "Edit: she should actually try to do things to boost her immune system, in any case."
If the world were that simple we wouldn't need wheelchairs. People could actually try to walk instead.
Old 05-27-06, 12:22 PM
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My wife was recently dropped from Medicaid after giving birth, but our new son will remain covered until he's 18. But now I'm in the market to get her covered. Some great suggestions here, but most of the inexpensive plans don't account for maternity-related expenses. Does anyone know of any inexpensive plans that deal with this? I've been with United Healthcare/Golden Rule for a few years, and it doesn't suck, but adding a woman of child-bearing age to my plan may not be affordable. That said, I'm fine with changing my plan to something crappier to accomodate her. Thanks...
Old 05-27-06, 09:37 PM
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The only advice I can put out there, is if you do not have insurance and do go to the doctors, let the doctor know, chances are that they will give you "samples" of the medication that you may need and will charge you their cheapiest rate for the office visit.
Old 07-21-06, 09:17 PM
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I've recently found myself in the same situation as scarab007; recently moved to NYC, looking for employment. My wife has a job, but won't become eligible for the company's health insurance for 3 months. Did you find a reasonable plan Scarab?
Old 07-21-06, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Jay G.
I've recently found myself in the same situation as scarab007; recently moved to NYC, looking for employment. My wife has a job, but won't become eligible for the company's health insurance for 3 months. Did you find a reasonable plan Scarab?
Are you worried something's going to happen to you within 3 months?

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