Can you get insurance through your husband’s work? That would probably be the least expensive route. If you want insurance on your own, the best place to start is by doing what you’re doing now – asking for personal recommendations. What kind of health insurance are you looking for? It might be a good idea to jot down a list of the different aspects of a health plan and then chart the differences between various plans you come across. Here’s an example:
·Monthly price (premium)
·Yearly deductible (amount you spend before the insurance company will start paying)
·Copay amount (amount you pay per service)
·Coinsurance amount (amount you split with the insurance company – usually a percentage; i.e., you pay 20 percent and the insurer pays 80 percent)
·Freedom of choice (can you visit whatever doctor you want?)
·Preventive medicine and routine doctor visits (does the plan include these?)
·Mental health (included in the plan; copay amounts; maximum number of annual visits).
I’d check out Consumer Reports (link below), US News & World Reports (link below), and whatever other informational resources you can find. I’d also talk with locally licensed health insurance agents. I’ve also included a couple of articles about choosing a health plan that might be useful. They are government-authored, but they’re actually pretty good (all linked below). I’ve also included a link to a PCOS support site (link below).
HMOs (health maintenance organizations) are popular right now, and they usually include mental health coverage in their plans. A typical example is that you would pay a monthly fee and then a copay when you visit your therapist (usually around $50 for a plan with low monthly payments). One potential problem, though, is access to physicians. An HMO might not have the kind of mental health specialist you’re looking for. For more choices, you might opt for a PPO (preferred provider organization) or a traditional fee-for-service plan.
You should try visiting MostChoice.com. It’s a Web site that helps you shop for health insurance. They have free instant price quotes and policy information on health plans near you, but their specialty is getting you in touch with state-licensed agents. There’s no cost or obligation to buy insurance. You just fill out a short form and wait for the agents to contact you (within 48 hours). Have your questions ready and let them work until one of them delivers the plan that’s right for you. You might want to have a set amount you want to spend each month on insurance and tell the agents to work within those parameters.
You can find MostChoice here: http://www.mostchoice.com/health-insurance.cfm
Hope this helps,
Barnes @ MostChoice