What Does Working from Home Mean for my Health Insurance?
In October 2021, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 4.1 million people had quit their jobs in the United States during 2021. Many of those millions of people may have started their own business working from home and no longer have access to a company-owned health insurance policy.
Switching to working as a freelancer or becoming an entrepreneur is a huge step, and it is well worth it for many Americans. We’re able to spend more time with family and friends, avoid stressful commutes, and sometimes, earn more money doing something we love as opposed to drudging away in a cubicle.
But you still need affordable medical coverage, whether you are working for yourself or a larger company. Here we explain the benefits of health insurance for people working from home, whether it is affordable, and how to shop for health insurance while working from home.
Is Health Insurance Worth Paying for on my own?
We are used to thinking of health insurance as a benefit provided by our employer. An amount of money is taken out of our paychecks every month to help pay into it, but that’s a (hopefully) small price to pay for the medical coverage we gain.
But what happens when you work from home? Unless you are working remotely for a company that provides health insurance, you are now responsible for finding health insurance on your own and paying for the entire premium out of your pocket.
The question you may be asking is, is health insurance worth paying for on my own? Is it worth having if I must spend hundreds of dollars on it every month? First off, insurance does not necessarily have to cost that much money. There are options for obtaining a discounted monthly premium, as we will discuss later in this article.
But the answer is, yes, it is worth it.
General health insurance provides fantastic benefits. Usually it will pay for or partially cover these expenses:
Doctor and Specialist Visits
Typically, your health insurance will cover the entire cost of a visit to your doctor, or it will cover part of it, so all you pay is a flat copayment amount. For example, if your doctor charges $100 per visit and your copay is $40, you only come up with $40. Your health insurance provider will foot the rest of the bill. Similarly, suppose you have a condition, disease, or injury that requires a specialist visit. There, your health insurance typically pays for the remaining costs of a visit after your copay.
Prescription Drugs, Testing, and Vaccinations
Prescription drugs can be egregiously expensive, costing anywhere from a few dollars up to thousands of dollars. Your health insurance policy can offset the cost to the point where you areonly paying a fraction of the price of the prescription out of pocket. You may not even have to pay anything at all!
If you need a blood test, urine test, strep test, or other essential health test performed, your insurance will likely partially cover it. Vaccines such as the flu shot are available for free under most health insurance policies.
Surgeries and Procedures
Procedures like colonoscopies and endoscopies are often performed in a clinic or surgery center and will likely be covered by your insurance after paying your deductible. Medically necessary surgeries fall under the umbrella of insurance coverage, again typically after you pay your deductible.
Some people claim they do not need health insurance because they rarely get sick and visit the doctor. But life is unpredictable. You never know when you may come down with a severe illness, break a bone, or develop an autoimmune disorder. You cannot predict when your dependents will need healthcare.
When you buy health insurance, you are investing in your future. You are giving yourself a safety net to fall into if a time comes when you need it.
Learn More: Which is Better, an HMO or PPO Insurance Policy?
Do I Need Supplemental Health Insurance If I am Working from Home?
Supplemental or ancillary health insurance policies are just as important as general medical insurance. They cover things that your primary policy does not. We listed six of the most popular kinds below:
Dental visits can be expensive; procedures such as root canals and fillings cost hundreds of dollars. Orthodontics rack up thousands. Your dental insurance will not cover all these costs, but it will offset them so you do not feel as burdened.
Vision insurance helps cover everything from eye exams to contacts and glasses. People who work remotely are usually staring at a computer screen all day. So, if you are working from home, it is more important than ever for you to maintain good eye health. You need up-to-date prescriptions to continue to see correctly.
Hospital Indemnity Insurance
Hospital indemnity insurance covers the expenses of hospital visits, such as an ambulance, blood, medical supplies, and medications.
Accidental coverage helps cover injuries incurred by falls, car wrecks, and any other unintentional situations.
If you become disabled and can no longer work, disability insurance helps you cover your bills and stay financially afloat. These policies also cover maternity leaves of absence.
No one likes to talk or even think about getting cancer. But it does not hurt to prepare you and your family members for it. Getting a supplementary cancer policy does not mean you are planning to get sick. It just means that if it occurs happening, your treatments, hospital stays, and travel expenses will be less than if you did not have the insurance.
Are Individual Insurance Policies Affordable?
While having many insurance policies could add up quickly, they need not break your budget. That is why in the United States, you can compare the policies of hundreds of different insurance companies to find the ones that work for you.
You may even qualify for free health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, income threshold requirements required to receive premium tax subsidies have increased, allowing more middle-class Americans access to cheap and sometimes even free health insurance!
This can be helpful for workers who left their soul-crushing cubicle jobs or those laid off during the pandemic. If you are not making much money that does not mean you should have to go without health insurance.
Learn More: Are Health Savings Accounts Worth It?
How do I Shop for an Insurance Policy?
The key to finding low-cost health insurance is to shop around for your policy. For some people, this is an entirely new concept. When you work for an employer, they choose the insurance companies and the policies for you for the most part.
However, when you are self-employed, you have the freedom – and the responsibility – to choose whichever insurance provider you want. It can be pretty overwhelming and challenging if you do not know where to start.
To shop for affordable ACA health coverage, you need to start at an insurance marketplace like TrueCoverage. At TrueCoverage, we provide you with a free health insurance quote and show you all the providers and policies based on some basic information.
TrueCoverage is a Certified Enhanced Direct-Enrollment partner of the official Healthcare.gov federal marketplace. This means we can offer over 50,000 different health plans from over 600 carriers, much more than the federal insurance marketplace. TrueCoverage is #1 in competitive quotes and will provide you with a multitude of personalized health insurance quotes in mere seconds.
From there, it is up to you to choose the plan that fits your budget and your needs; our agents are here for you if you need help making that big decision. If you use TrueCoverage, we also guide you through the process of signing up for your chosen plan.
There are tons of health insurance options out there, and we want to help you find the best one. Start your journey to full individual coverage today.
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