Things to consider before renewing your health insurance
As with other types of insurance, health insurance policies renew on a yearly basis, which means that your coverage will be extended for another year. This is a great opportunity for you to review and assess whether your current plan still fits your needs and budget – right before you commit yourself to another year’s contract. If not, you are entitled to switching to a new plan, or even changing your insurer.
In this Pacific Prime Singapore article, our in-house experts will cover the most important factors you should consider during the pre-renewal period.
What you should think about when renewing health insurance
Level of benefits
It is high time you look back and evaluate whether the level of benefits in your plan is fit for you. Were some of the benefits never used? Or should you increase some benefit limits? You can choose to cut unnecessary benefits from your plan, or include additional benefits to cater to your needs. You may also extend your coverage scope by requesting to add doctors and clinics that are not in your network to your plan.
Look out for policy changes
You should be aware of changes made by your insurer in the scope of coverage and premiums in your new policy:
With the ever-rising healthcare costs, it is common for insurers to increase premiums. Having said that, you should ensure that the increment is in line with the average market adjustment rate.
Change in benefits/limits
Most insurers will not cut benefits or decrease limits in your plan but you should still double-check your contract. Some insurers may even add new benefits to your plan to stay competitive in the market.
Deductibles, a.k.a. excesses, are the amounts you should pay out of pocket before the insurer kicks in and pays the rest of your claim. In general, the higher the health insurance deductible, the less expensive the policy. Although a plan with deductibles usually charges lower premiums, you should be aware of the amount you need to pay for coverage.
Insurers may change their list of medical service providers, including doctors, hospitals, and clinics for financial reasons. In-network healthcare providers charge significantly less than their out-of-network counterparts.
An insurer has the right to stop selling an insurance product due to profitability or other reasons. When this happens, you can stay under the same plan or migrate to another plan without underwriting.
You should ask yourself whether you are satisfied with the current service the insurer provides. For instance, does it take very long to process a claim? Do you have to go through bureaucratic and complex procedures to obtain simple information about your plan? Service quality plays a huge part in your actual insurance experience. A long claims process can be especially frustrating if you need the claim urgently.
Changes in circumstances
If you’ve developed any chronic health conditions during your existing policy term, it’s safer to stay with your current insurer. It is because the new insurer will view these conditions as pre-existing conditions and thus refuse to cover them.
Get support from insurance experts
It’s a smart move to engage the service of a professional insurance broker, which can help assess your needs and review your policy and benefit limits before the renewal date. They can also explore new options for you by comparing various plans on the market, turning your renewal into a fuss-free process.
Contact us today for impartial insurance advice, free quotes, and a plan comparison!
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