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Medical Insurance
Old 11-06-2004, 07:32 PM   #1
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Medical Insurance

It seems that many members carry some sort of medical insurance whether retired or still employed.

What type of insurance do you have and how much does it cost per month for 1, 2 or more people?

What does it cover?

My idea of a good plan allows a visit to any physician in network (and network is throughout the US) for a copay of $10 or $15.
Out of network reimburses at 70% after a small deductible. This includes some doctors and hospitals outside the United States as well.
Prescriptions cost $5 to $25 and discounts for 3 month mail aways.
Blood tests, MRI's and hospital stays are pretty much covered at 100%.

These policies with major carriers are not cheap.

How do they compare with yours?
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-06-2004, 07:58 PM   #2
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Re: Medical Insurance

Low co-pays mean higher premiums. I would go for a plan that also qualifies you for a MSA or HSA and then max out the contributions to that account each year.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-06-2004, 08:09 PM   #3
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Re: Medical Insurance

I was using Kaiser Permanente here in CA. $170 a month for a 43 year old single, no prescription drugs, $50 co-pay, pretty much everything covered past that within reason. $218 a month for the same setup with prescription drugs and a $20 co-pay. Since I've been able to neutralize most of my gains and income, almost the whole years payments qualified as a deduction as it exceeded 7.5% of my gross income. I was perfectly happy with the coverage and how they worked...got appointments pretty quick, didnt have to argue about having tests and stuff done, etc. Generally pretty happy with them.

Bailed on it four months ago when we got married and the wife covered me on the BC/BS plan from her work. Which isnt as good...its an 80/20 plan with a $1000 deductible. Lots of paperwork flying back and forth. I wish I could just give BC a credit card and let them pay the bill and charge me for the differences to simply things. Next Feb when we have the baby, I expect its going to be REALLY entertaining.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-07-2004, 04:51 AM   #4
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Re: Medical Insurance

Quote:
Next Feb when we have the baby, I expect its going to be REALLY entertaining.
TH, if this is your first, you have no idea of just how "entertaining" things are going to get (and I'm not referring to medical insurance).

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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-07-2004, 08:43 AM   #5
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Re: Medical Insurance

Yep it is...a great adventure is about to begin...
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-07-2004, 11:34 AM   #6
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Re: Medical Insurance

We'll probably see you posting at all sorts of interesting hours....when most of us are asleep.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-07-2004, 05:59 PM   #7
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Re: Medical Insurance

I like the Blue Cross PPO. Monthly premiums will depend upon your health when you apply. If you want the best rates, keep your weight under control, don't smoke, and exercise.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-15-2004, 12:02 PM   #8
 
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Re: Medical Insurance

Before I got married I did contract work and had an individual policy with Blue Cross. I was 29 when I switched to my husband's fed employee policy (also Blue Cross).

My individual rates with Blue Cross (5 years ago) were $110 for $1000 deductible. To help a friend, I looked up their rates recently and they are still very reasonable if you choose a $1000 or $2500 deductible. A person age 50-59 can get a policy for about $275. My folks are over 60 and their premium is $500.

There are some delays in billing (as with all insurers)- it always takes a month or two for BC to finish the paperwork, but I've never had a claim denied or benefits under-reimbursed. In fact, I was hospitalized due to an accidnet when I had an individual policy and BCBS paid >$125,000 to cover my costs.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-18-2004, 11:57 AM   #9
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Re: Medical Insurance

A Wall St. Journal article on Tuesday, 11/16 sums up a problem that I have run into. At age 59 and in what I consider great health to enjoy early retirement, I have been rejected by one insurance company. No serious current problems, non-smoking 120 pound vegetarian is just not a good fiscal risk for the insurance company and I was applying for a $5k deductible

Health insurance is a major consideration of early retirement. It would be nice if we could do a Medicare buy-in at age 62.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 11-18-2004, 02:21 PM   #10
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Re: Medical Insurance

Medical insurance for Canadians rates at about a 10 on a 1 to 10 scale.

It's a non-starter for us.

Now........if only I didn't have to shovel snow!
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-25-2004, 09:37 PM   #11
 
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Re: Medical Insurance

My medical ins. went up to over $1000. per month this year for my wife & I. She has several pre-existing conditions so we are unable to change companies.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 12:17 AM   #12
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Re: Medical Insurance

Medical insurance in 2004 was $51 per month for single coverage for 2005 it will be $76 a 50% increase. It will probably double to $150 in the next 2 years. The plan is Keystone East HMO its in-network only & requires a primary care physician. It includes a $15 dollar copay & $20 for 90 day prescriptions.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 03:32 AM   #13
 
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Re: Medical Insurance

$150 per month/single looks like a bargain to me. Not sure I personally EVER saw a rate that low. Our coverage is limited
but under my present circumstances I am happy just to
have insurance . If the premiums got to be too much for the (non-existent) budget, I would "go bare" like unclemick and try to hang on for Medicare.

JG
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 03:55 AM   #14
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Re: Medical Insurance

My former employer is raising the percentage retires pay without a COLA increase. $150 will be about 5% of pension & it will probably double again in 3/4 years.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 04:40 AM   #15
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Re: Medical Insurance

I just applied for new medical insurance thru Farm Bureau for a BC&BS policy. For a family of 4 using my husband's age as the entry point, the premium is $308.00. It's a high deductable plan of 2600/5200, zero co-insurance but each member is allowed $500 per year for preventative care. The gross total premium itself comes off of the front end of our gross wages, reducing our taxable income. All of us in the family are healthy with no riders attached.

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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 05:05 AM   #16
 
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Re: Medical Insurance

Dirt cheap!

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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 05:29 AM   #17
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Re: Medical Insurance

I think it sounds cheap, too. I asked if this was a "teaser" rate and was told this was the posted rate for anyone in IA with the same conditions. The rates are for the whole pool and consists of everyone in IA and not just my zipcode. Rates typically go up once a year at a rate of around 5% per year. This is one of those HSA plans but I am not using that aspect of it. We have no medical problems where this would be a benifit for us.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 05:45 AM   #18
 
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Re: Medical Insurance

You know, this reminds me a bit of my satisfaction with my "no stocks" position. How so you ask? Well, I have
spent an enourmous amount of time looking for
affordable health insurance. Now, we have insurance we like, although I
recognize its limitations and doubt I could start fresh
now and get coverage anywhere, at least nowhere I
could pay the premiums. So, an issue which requires no
further expenditure of time or brainpower. Same with
stocks. I don't own them, so I don't need to consider
what they are doing. Thus, my life is simplified
my taking these items off the table. You've all heard
of paralysis by analysis. Keep it simple. Thoreau was onto something

JG
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 07:44 PM   #19
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Re: Medical Insurance

Quote:
This is one of those HSA plans but I am not using that aspect of it. We have no medical problems where this would be a benifit for us.
If you max out your IRA/401k, the HSA may be another way to put more tax advantaged money away for retirement. As I understand it, if you don't need the money for meds, you can keep it in the account until 65, then use it for any purpose. You should check with your accountant to be sure.
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Re: Medical Insurance
Old 12-26-2004, 07:46 PM   #20
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Re: Medical Insurance

Quote:
Thoreau was onto something...
Isn't he the guy that was thrown in jail for failure to pay taxes, and then died young because he wouldn't go to his doctor for regular check ups? I don't know about that particular life style.
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