There is a
lot of information in both the national and local news about
significant increases in health insurance premiums for
Winthrop Quigley recently (May 17, 2010) published an
interesting article in the Albuquerque Journal: Some insurance
pools tend to self destruct. He explained that there is a state
regulation that prohibits new younger participants from joining
an older pool of individual policies. So the cost increases and
you can be trapped in older policy with rapidly increasing
premiums. What can you do?
Like group insurance plans, an individual policy must be
reviewed and actively managed every few years. It is worth the
effort to review newer policy offerings and possibly changing to
a newer policy or even changing to a policy offered by another
The biggest obstacle may be your current health. There is no
guarantee that an insurer will take you on. Individual plans are
medically underwritten and the insurer may reject your
application or attach exclusions to your policy if you have
health problems. People enrolled in individual plans pay
premiums more in line with their expected health costs, so the
premiums will be higher for those who are older or less healthy.
If you're faced with finding individual insurance, don't let the
confusion tempt you to go without. Even if you're healthy, you
could fall off a ladder or have a serious car accident and be
financially ruined. Plus, you'll lose your
pre-existing-conditions coverage in most states if you go
without insurance for more than 63 days.
Finding the right balance of coverage and cost can be
challenging, but it's a necessity. So take your search one step
at a time. The first step is to evaluate your needs and
understand your health insurance options. You can begin that
process by completing our
Individual Information Sheet.