Five Ways to Cut Your Health Care Costs

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Despite economic depressions and recessions, medical care is something that remains needed and significant. However, this does not mean that you should not price shop for the best medical care coverage. Medical care can be expensive, but with the right amount of research and knowledge, you can cut the costs of your medical care.

Understand your insurance coverage
Even patients with health insurance find themselves paying high medical bills. The insurance coverage policy can be confusing and difficult to navigate. You might assume that you are covered for a certain medical procedure, only to receive high medical bill weeks later. If possible, understand the specifics of your health insurance. Know which providers are covered and which are not. If you require a medical procedure, discuss it with your insurance provider ahead of time. They might recommend switching medical providers or the location of your procedure to cut costs. Too many people do not understand the details of their current health insurance plan.

Create an emergency plan
The highest medical bills that put people into debt are often from a medical emergency. When medical care is immediate and you do not have time to search for approved medical providers, you can be left with a huge bill. However, creating an emergency plan ahead of time can help you avoid these costs. For example, going to a childrens urgent care versus the local emergency room can save you thousands. Average reimbursement for an urgent care visit is approximately $103 per patient, compared to $302 per patient on average in a hospital emergency department, according to a medical report. You can prepare yourself for these after hours pediatrics emergencies by looking up 24 hour emergency room near me ahead of time.

Always go with the generic prescription
After you have searched for a 24 hour emergency room near me and visited with your medical emergency, it is likely that you are prescribed a medication. Even if the physician prescribes you a non generic medication, you can request a generic version. In most cases, the generic medication is comprised of the same ingredients and the only difference is that it comes at a cheaper price. Prescription costs can get expensive, especially following a 24 hour emergency room near me visit. Always inquire about the generic prescription option.

Know when to visit 24 hour urgent care locations
It can also be financially smart to know when to visit 24 hour urgent care locations and when a 24 hour emergency room near me visit is required. Learning about the most commonly treated conditions in an urgent care location can help you make your medical care decision, even in the middle of an emergency. Most urgent care centers offer a convenient quality and cost for some of the most common medical conditions. A 2009 RAND Corp. study reported 14 to 27% of emergency department visits could be handled by Urgent Care centers or retail clinics, saving up to $4.4 billion a year in health costs.

Choose a primary care physician
If you see multiple physicians, it can also be difficult to keep your medical needs straight. When you choose a primary care physician, they are responsible for all of your medical records. When you visit a local emergency department or urgent care convenient medical treatment center, you can then follow up with your primary physician. This keeps your medical treatment needs in one place and can save you the cost of high copays by seeing multiple physicians.

Americans rely heavily on the 24 hour access to care provided by emergency departments and visits have increased by 22% over the past decade. These visits are often extremely expensive especially if you have minimal or no health insurance. Fortunately, there are ways to cut your health care expenses. Understanding your health insurance, knowing when to visit an urgent care center, and developing an emergency medical care treatment plan can help you cut your medical care costs.

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