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If you’ve stepped foot in a doctor’s office in recent years or followed health trends in health insurance, you’ve probably heard of preventive care services. Preventive care has become a buzzword in an industry undergoing rapid transformation. The shift in focusing primarily on preventive treatments is happening alongside a health insurance industry looking for ways to lower costs and consumers struggling to pay their medical bills.
If you’ve somehow missed the train, the medical services are designed to defend against debilitating and expensive health-related conditions. These are conditions that, when left untreated or unnoticed, worsen to the point that they are no longer treatable or require costly medical interventions you probably want to avoid.
What Services Are Considered Preventive Care?
Preventive healthcare includes a number of different methods healthcare professionals use to keep your health at optimal levels. This can include regular check-ups with your primary care doctor, routine health screenings, and pediatric screenings that search for common illnesses and conditions in children.
Some examples include things as simple as annual wellness visits, well-woman, well-baby, and well-child visits. There are also easy to get preventive services like vaccinations for the flu, measles, meningitis, pneumonia, and polio. Your primary care doctor can also conduct regular screenings for blood pressure issues, high cholesterol, and diabetes.
Preventive healthcare also incorporates cancer screenings like mammograms and colonoscopies. Finally, pregnancy care and STD screenings are treatments also considered valuable and preventive.
Are Preventive Services Covered By Health Insurance
Your health insurance plan should cover preventive care services; this includes both employer-sponsored plans and individually purchased coverage. The Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly called Obamacare, made preventive healthcare services a priority. The law mandates that all insurance plans, including private coverage purchased from the ACA marketplaces as well as any plans you obtain outside the marketplace, cover a list of age-appropriate preventive services at no cost to you. This means you will not have a copay, coinsurance, or deductible to access these services.
To receive these services at no cost you must use a provider within your insurance network. Your insurance company will be able to provide a list of in-network doctors and facilities. You should also be aware that if the preventive care is not the primary reason for your appointment, you will likely be billed separately for the doctor visit. Some services, such as mammograms and colonoscopies, are only considered preventive once you’ve reached a certain age range; your doctor can advise you on these requirements.
The only other exception you may encounter is if your insurance coverage is a grandfathered plan. These are insurance plans created prior to March 24, 2010. These plans are exempt from the preventive coverage requirements and generally rare.
Types Of Preventive Care
The services considered preventive include any healthcare service that is offered to prevent further and worsening conditions down the road. Those services that can be provided at no cost to you include annual wellness visits, vaccinations, prenatal care, cancer screenings, and testing for blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes.
Preventive treatment also includes counseling for behaviors that prevent health problems later in life. This can incorporate guidance on weight loss, smoking cessation, healthy eating, alcohol dependency, depression, and STD avoidance.
Why It’s So Important
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has studied preventive care services and considers the issue extremely important. CDC research has determined that if everyone in the United States received the recommended preventive healthcare measures, then 100,000 lives would be saved each year.
Treatment for serious health conditions is easier and more effective when it’s started early. Preventive service will not only save you and your insurance company money on treatments that get more expensive as conditions progress but can save your life.
Finding Coverage For Preventive Care With FirstQuote Health
It’s in your best interest to find a health insurance plan that covers preventive services. While it may be that the majority of plans on the market do offer preventive care benefits, you still may have gotten stuck with a policy that is less than comprehensive. If that’s the case, FirstQuote Health can help.
Enter your zip code to find comprehensive health insurance plans in your area. Compare quotes in just minutes, and find something that fits your needs. You can even get covered as quickly as today, so don’t wait any longer.