Joseph E. Fiegoli on Choosing a Health Plan

Choosing a health insurance plan may induce a bit of anxiety as you weed through plan options and industry jargon. Joseph Fiegoli, founder of National Health Administrators, Inc., provides clarity with three tips for choosing the plan that meets your needs best.

1. Make a decision between three plan types: health maintenance organization (HMO), preferred provider organization (PPO) and point-of-service plan (POS). They vary based on the flexibility you have when choosing a doctor. An HMO is typically more affordable, but requires you to pick an in-network doctor. A PPO gives you license to choose an out-of-network doctor, though you may pay a higher price. A POS plan is best described as a mix of a HMO and PPO and may be a good option for those who are comfortable using an in-network family doctor but would like the option to visit out-of-network specialists.

2. Consider the cost. Several insurance sites offer tools for calculating total costs across plans. Decide if you’d rather pay higher monthly fees (combined with lower deductibles) or the opposite. Identify the co-payments required for the office visits you make most regularly.

3. During open enrollment windows, verify changes to your plan. Open enrollment is a good time to confirm you’ve chosen the right plan—and to make sure prior coverage is still intact.

Joe Fiegoli works in health administration in Peekskill, New York.

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