How to Buy Health Insurance
Choosing a health insurance company—and an insurance plan—can be confusing. But when you know a few key facts, the decisions are a lot easier.
Choosing a health insurance plan
Take time to think about the past year.
- How often did you or your family visit doctors?
- Did you meet your deductible?
- Did your doctor participate in the Cigna network?
- Did you travel frequently and need coverage outside your local area?
- Did you have a child away at college?
- What prescription drugs did you need?
There are no "right" or "wrong" answers. These questions will help you decide which insurance plan best fits your coverage needs and budget.
Benefits and discounts
Sure, you want good coverage with your plan, Cigna can offer you even more. Cigna provides these services with every plan:
- Online tools and an app that help you locate a provider, manage your healthcare costs, and access your claim information any time.
- 24/7 customer service and care teams to answer your coverage questions and to support your health care needs.
Many health insurance plans provide coverage for prescription drugs. But that coverage can vary, depending on a few factors.
- Cigna provides a mail-order pharmacy service. Your prescriptions are delivered to your home. Some customers may see savings by using the mail-order pharmacy service
- Some Cigna plans offer mail-orders of up to a 90-day supply, depending on the medication, Refer to your plan documents for details.
- Cigna's plans provide coverage for a large list of both brand-name and generic medications, You may save money by switching to generics ($4 vs. $60 for a 30-day supply, in some cases).
Tax advantages in health insurance
Health insurance plans that are qualified for a Health Savings Account bank allow you to set aside tax-deferred money toward future qualified medical expenses.
The tax-deferred money can go into the bank of your choice but must be used to cover qualified medical expenses. If you don't use the money, you can roll the money toward next year's expenses. Please consult a tax professional for advice
Crunching the numbers when buying health insurance
Premiums, copays, deductibles, coinsurance, and out-of-pocket maximums: What does it all mean? Let's break it down with an example:
Let's say you need emergency* surgery. If you have a Cigna plan with a $3,000 annual in-network deductible, 80/20 coinsurance for in-patient services, and a $6,500 annual out-of-pocket maximum:
- You pay the first $3,000 to meet your annual in-network deductible.
- That's when coinsurance applies–with Cigna paying 80% of the contracted amount and you paying 20%.
- However, because the plan has a $6,500 annual out-of pocket maximum, you've got a cap on your annual out-of-pocket expenses.
In this example, the most you will pay in one year for that emergency* surgery is $6,500 – a fraction of the cost of the surgery and hospital care and recovery for such an event.
That's how health insurance works. You pay a monthly premium just as you do with car insurance. Depending on your plan, you may pay a deductible when you have a medical expense just as you do with car insurance when you have a claim. With health insurance, you may also pay a percent of the remaining covered expenses. And with the annual out-of-pocket maximum, your portion is capped
Customer service and support
When you have questions about health insurance, who can answer them? That's the benefit of Cigna’s customer service team. Cigna has customer service representatives available 24/7 to answer questions on your health care needs, providers, or claims — speaking in plain, simple language.
A licensed Cigna insurance agent can provide the information you are looking for. You can get answers to your questions. They will crunch the numbers based on your coverage and budget needs, and can help you decide which health insurance plan is best for you.
Do you speak Spanish? Cigna has Spanish-speaking insurance agents. Use an interpreter? Cigna also has agents who will work with your interpreter.
*Emergency services as defined in the plan.
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