Are you looking for affordable health insurance in Texas

If you live in Texas and need individual health insurance for the first time, or if you are thinking of changing to a new plan or getting low-cost health insurance, do nothing until you have read this article. This article is for you.

  • What makes Texas different?
  • How do these differences affect you and your family?
  • How can you make the most of your investment in health insurance?
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What makes Texas different?

Of all the contiguous US states Texas is the largest and has a population of around 28 million, the second-highest in the entire country.  Texas also has two of the ten largest cities in the US.

Texas is approximately 3x larger (area) than the UK but has around 40% of the population.  If Texas were a country it would rank tenth in terms of economic size!  Among US states only California ranks higher. (Wikipedia)

Over the last ten years, the population growth has been between 1.5% and just over 2%, which may not seem much, but it is equal to half a million people per year and a likely total population of 50 million by 2050. (Texas State Data Center and the Office of the State Demographer)

Three last facts; the latest Forbes study on the healthiest states put Texas at 37th, and one of the lowest of all in terms of health insurance coverage.  Finally, the inhabitants of Texas rate themselves 11th Happiest in the USA (Gallop/Healthway 2017) and they rate 12th for Emotional and Physical Well Being (WalletHub 2019)

How do these differences affect me and my family?

Well, there are numerous factors that your health insurers will take into account when they determine their premiums and some of these are factors you should consider when you choose a plan(s).

First, there are things you can’t influence, while choosing health insurance such as:

  • Where you live – in the city or in a rural county?
  • Any pre-existing conditions?
  • Your age, and any predictable consequences?

The basic monthly premium you pay will take these things, among others, into account. You will be entitled to emergency treatment and hospital care (up to certain limits) and for certain preventative and screening services, as one of the 10 essential benefits every qualifying health insurance policy must provide (Part A).

You will, under any circumstances, have pay for or be insured for any treatments, medications or prescription drugs that are NOT included in the ten essential benefits.

You may not be able to influence the three factors we listed, but you can plan to minimize the cost.

Where do you live?

In a large State like Texas the population is broadly divided into city dwellers and rural communities.  It is inevitable that you should take this into account when choosing a health insurance plan.  Check that your preferred physician is in your plan’s network, check that facilities that you may need are accessible and ‘within network’. Your chosen health exchange can put this information at your fingertips.  

Any pre-existing conditions?

You cannot be refused health insurance because of a pre-existing condition BUT you can plan on the best way of meeting the anticipated cost of medication or prescription drugs.  You can balance your premium, your deductible and out of pocket expense to optimize your family healthcare budget.

Talk to your preferred Health Exchange They will help you find the plan(s) that suit your circumstances

Your age and any predictable consequences?

Whatever your age you should look back on the pattern of your healthcare spending, compare it with what you anticipate for the coming year or plan period and re-adjust.

Don’t just roll-over!  Do you anticipate medical treatment, e.g. hip or knee surgery or a chronic condition that will need treatment or medication?  Choose the health insurance plan that is right for the coming year, not the plan that was right for last year.

The advice of your health exchange is free, unbiased and confidential.  TAKE ADVANTAGE.

Now, what about the things you can control?

Texas is not alone.  Most states share similar lists of Top Health Risks.

Top of the list are traffic accidents and, no surprise, the best advice is to ‘wear your seatbelt’. In more than half of all traffic accident fatalities, the victims were not wearing their seat belts at the time of the crash. ‘Seat belts protect you from being ejected from the vehicle, which is what causes the most serious injuries in the majority of accidents’.  Emergency Room visits and post-operative care and rehabilitation can be life-changing expensive. [Drawn from, D Parker R.N., BSN., Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano]

Prevention is better than cure.  The underlying cause of many medical conditions is obesity.  Obesity itself may have genetic or lifestyle causes.  In either case OBESITY SCREENING AND COUNSELLING are among the 18 FREE preventative services which every qualifying health insurance plan must cover.

Related screening and counseling (also ‘free’) is available for: –

  • Blood pressure screening
  • Cholesterol screening
  • Depression screening
  • Diabetes (type 2) screening
  • Diet counseling
  • Hepatitis B screening
  • Hepatitis C screening
  • Immunization vaccines
  • Lung cancer screening
  • Obesity screening and counseling
  • Tobacco use screening and cessation interventions

Tobacco usage and cancer rates in Texas are among the lowest in the States but even so, there are more than 115 thousand reported new cases each year (World Population Review). Cancer deaths are second only to deaths caused by heart disease.

Screening and counseling for both is ‘free’ (ACA or Medicare Part A and included in your premium).

If you do give up tobacco usage the benefits are enormous.  You will feel better, extend your life expectancy AND save money not only on buying tobacco but on your insurance premium too.  As much as 25%!

Before you enroll for the first time or consider changing your plan(s) talk to a Health Exchange at least to make sure you are doing the right thing.

Read more about Texas Health Insurance

Read more about affordable health insurance in Texas

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