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Home Knowledge Center7 Ways to Help Lower Out-of-Pocket Health Care Costs

7 Ways to Help Pay Less for Out-of-Pocket Costs

You can lower your out-of-pocket health care costs with these helpful quick tips.

1. Stay in-network

You can save on your out-of-pocket costs when you use a doctor, hospital, or facility that’s part of your Cigna plan’s network. Chances are there’s an in-network doctor or facility nearby. If a doctor or facility is not contracted with your health plan, they are considered “out-of-network” and your out-of-pocket costs will be higher.

Learn more about the difference between in-network and out-of-network

2. Get preventive care

Your annual check-up, immunizations, and screenings can help detect or prevent serious diseases and help you stay healthy. Your primary care provider can help you coordinate tests and shots that are right for you based on your age, sex, and family history. These screenings might include your annual exam, blood pressure and cholesterol tests, diabetes and colon cancer screenings, and mammograms and Pap tests.

Learn more about preventive care

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3. Consider a convenience care clinic

Need to see your doctor but can’t get an appointment? Talk to your doctor about using a convenience care clinic. You can get quick access to quality, cost-effective medical care. You can find convenience care clinics in some grocery stores, pharmacies, and other retail stores. A convenience care clinician can treat you for:

  • Sinus infections
  • Rashes
  • Earaches
  • Minor burns
  • Other routine medical conditions

4. Consider using an urgent care center

If your medical need isn’t serious or life threatening and you can’t get an appointment with your doctor, consider an urgent care center instead of the emergency room (ER). An urgent care center provides quality care like an ER, but it can save you hundreds of dollars. These centers are staffed by doctors and other medical professionals. Visit an urgent care center for things like:

  • Minor cuts
  • Burns and sprains
  • Fever and flu symptoms
  • Joint or lower back pain
  • Urinary tract infections

Learn more about when you should use urgent care

5. Talk to a nurse for free

You can talk to a nurse 24/7 at no additional cost to you by calling .

They’ll ask a few questions about your symptoms, then help you decide whether to go to urgent care, see your doctor, go to the emergency room, or care for yourself at home. They're here with support and guidance for any non-emergency situation.

6. Virtual care (telehealth) doctor visits can be a cost-effective option

What to do when you need minor medical care while you’re away from home or your health care provider isn’t available? Check to see if your plan covers virtual care (telehealth) visits. With virtual care, you can connect with board-certified medical providers and licensed therapists online using a phone, tablet, or computer 24/7. A virtual care visit can be a quick, convenient, and cost-effective option when your health care provider isn’t available.

7. Know costs before you go

In-network radiology centers, outpatient surgery centers, and laboratories can give you quality service like a hospital – but at a much lower cost. Using an in-network national lab can also help you save money on your out-of-pocket expenses, plus they offer convenient locations across the United States.

It’s also important to understand how much a visit might cost before you go. To make sure there are no surprises, Cigna customers can view cost and quality information on myCigna®  or the myCigna® mobile app.

Find a doctor in your Cigna plan's network


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This information is for educational purposes only and is not medical advice or services. Always consult with your health care provider and consider all relevant factors when making decisions related to your health care.

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