It's not as scary as it sounds.
For any young professional who has been overwhelmed by open enrollment and sorting through healthcare plans—take a deep breath. On this week's "Adulthood Made Easy," host Sam Zabell is joined by Erin Hemlin, the National Training Director for Young Invincibles, to figure out how to buy the perfect plan, what exactly is covered, and what to do once you've finally purchased insurance. Here, Hemlin shares a few key points to know when deciding which plan is right for you.
Know the terminology: A "premium" is the amount you pay every month to remain in your health insurance plan. The "marketplace," is the online site where you purchase plans outside of your employer. If you're getting health insurance through the marketplace, you will likely be eligible for "tax credits," which are designed to help a wide range of incomes—those with lower incomes will qualify for higher credits, which help make the plans more affordable.
Choose a plan that's right for you: An "affordable" plan through your employer will cost less than 9.5 percent of your income. If you already have a doctor you love, make sure that doctor takes the particular insurance you're looking for. Also make sure any medications you take regularly are covered in your plan—you can consult the drug formulary to see how much your insurance company will pay versus how much you will pay.
You're not enrolled until you pay your first premium: That's called "effectuated coverage." Once enrolled, you can begin creating online profiles with your provider and finding doctors in your network to set up annual exams. Tip: Under the Affordable Care Act, preventive health screenings, like your annual exam, are free with no co-pay.
For more on healthcare, and how to navigate the system, listen to the full episode below. Don't forget to subscribe to the show on iTunes!