Health and Dental Insurance – Where to Get the Best Rates

Buying health and dental insurance is important for you and your family for so many reasons:

* You’re more likely to get regular checkups and to treat problems when they’re small and more easily resolved

* Insurance can save you from financial disaster should you or someone in your family have a serious accident or major illness

Many people scrimp in order to buy health insurance but think dental insurance is an unaffordable luxury. However, you can find a bundled package that offers low-cost health, dental, and even vision insurance for your family.

Finding Low Cost Health and Dental Insurance

The best way to search for affordable medical and dental insurance is to go online to an insurance comparison website. All you have to do is fill in a simple online form with information about yourself and your insurance needs, such as:

* What type of coverage you are looking for

* How much you want to pay for deductibles and co-payments

* Whether you have any pre-existing health conditions

Once you fill in the form, you’ll begin to receive quotes from multiple A-rated insurance companies. Then you can simply review and compare the quotes, choosing the best one for your family.

Comparing Quotes: Look Beyond Cost

When you compare the quotes you receive, it’s important to look at more than the cost. You want an affordable rate, but you also want coverage that will provide the protection you need. Some questions to ask as you compare quotes include:

* If you must select a health care provider from a list, is your provider on that list?

* Does the policy cover diagnostic and preventive care such as annual physicals and semi-annual dentals?

* What procedures must you follow if you need to consult a specialist?

When you look at both the rate and the coverage, you’ll be able to choose a plan that balances your health care needs and your checkbook.

Where to Get the Best Rates

Health and Dental Insurance – Buy Both Together For More Savings

Many major health and dental insurance policies use a network of professional providers to help contain costs. This network of doctors, dentists, therapists, hospitals, etc. agree to accept the insurance that is attached to the network, and they also agree to charge network prices for their services. The insurance company controls costs by getting medical and dental providers agree to predetermined prices. They also pass those savings on by paying a larger percentage of the costs to insured people who use their network providers!

A PPO or Preferred Provider Organization is probably the most common type of heath insurance plan which is connected to a network. A dental plan may be referred to as a DPO or Dental Provider Organization. However many large insurance plans will use a network that provides both medical and dental care providers. Again, these network contracted medical and dental providers have agreed to charge predetermined prices for their services, and to accept the insurance company’s clients.

Usually a PPO or DPO insurance plan will allow their members to seek services outside of the network, but they offer to cover a much larger percentage of the bill if network providers are used. A member can find local medical and dental providers by consulting a printed list or by a convenient search on the web.

A network can also be provided by another type of medical or dental insurance, called an HMO (Health Maintenance Organization) or DMO (Dental Maintenance Organization). These types of insurance plans also use a network, but they specify they will only cover services provided by network providers. You must use a doctor or dentist on their list to get your health and dental care covered. They may cover even more of the bill if you agree to use the network, but you give up some flexibility of being able to choose a doctor outside of the network. In an emergency or unusual situation, an HMO or DMO may waive this restriction.

A Combined Network Can Save you Money!

So how can this save you money? Well, membership in the actual network is usually a part of your insurance premium. Sometimes the amount is bundled in your payment, and sometimes it is more obvious as a different payment. Why pay this amount twice. I have found major insurance companies who bundle dental and health insurance in one policy, and these plans are usually less than separate dental insurance and health insurance policies!