Stay Healthy

Stay Healthy
family health insurance
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Randy Deng, 9 years old, U.S. Arts Ed Center, 4th grade, Hacienda Heights, CA, "Stay Healthy"

Looking for a family health insurance can be a real daunting task. Not only do you have to look forwards to a plan that suits the individual needs of each member, but the medical plan should be affordable and comprehensive as well.

Family plans are costlier than individual plans because they cover more number of people. So if there is a couple, it is a better idea to go for individual plan for each of them. But if the family in question is larger and includes more people, then going in for a family health plan would turn out to be much cheaper than insuring every member individually.

Getting a medical plan that is perfect for the entire family can get really difficult. What is right for one member may not be so for the other. So to get a policy that is adequate for all them is not easy.

The approval of a family policy and the premium to be paid will depend on various factors.  These include:
•    The number of members in the family
•    Amount of deductible chosen
•    Pre-existing medical conditions
•    Prior hospitalizations
•    Chronic illness
•    Family history

A review of all this information will help is assessing the appropriate health insurance coverage needed for the family.

A family insurance is advantageous as there are additional benefits that are a part of the policy. Apart from that family insurances are generally cheaper than other plans. One can either buy a family insurance plan on his own or can access it through his employer. Companies often provide family medical insurance to their employees at a subsidized premium.

The types of family health plans are similar to the options available in individual plans. There are basically two types of family medical plans.
a)    Indemnity family plan: It offers more affordable rates and access to the largest network of physicians. However the shortcoming of such a plan is that the deductibles are hefty and one has to pay the majority of medical bills up front till the deductible is reached.
b)    Managed healthcare plans: These are gaining popularity and have replaced indemnity family health insurances in almost all spheres. Managed health plans include HMOs, PPOs and PoS plans.

Managed healthcare plans are affordable and they offer comprehensive coverage. But the problem with such family plans is that one has to consult doctors within the preferred network of healthcare service providers. One can consult doctors outside the network, but at a higher price. If one’s family doctor is a part of the network provided by the insurance company, then there is no deal like it.

Family health insurance plans offer the advantages of group plans coupled with the personalised services of individual plans. However they are cost effective only when you have a large enough people to cater to.

Shaun Mike exercises in the expertise in family health insurance and is in business of health insurance in the US for over a decade now.

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Question by 360mommy: Family health insurance plan or individual health insurance plans for each person?
I am quoting health coverage in Kansas for my family since we do not get this from an employer. My agent suggested that each family member have a separate insurance plan instead of one family plan to cut costs. I have never heard of doing this? Any comments or suggestions? Thanks

Best answer:

Answer by Michelle S
I have never heard of that either. Typically you will pay less as a family.

Maybe the agent means everyone get their own and pay for their own.

Add your own answer in the comments!

4 comments to Stay Healthy

  • AriesJWR

    I have never heard of this either. Make sure you get quotes both ways.

    Grouping your insurance together as a family usually provides you with a family discount, you will also have a maximum out of pocket for the family as well as each individual. If everyone has their own plans theoretically you could end up paying out more in medical expenses to meet individual deductibles (vs a family deductible).

  • mbrcatz

    If you’re talking wife, husband, and ten kids, the family plan will be cheaper. If you’re talking one kid, it really might be cheaper to do the individual plans.

    You’ve got the agent. Listen to him. But have him run the numbers, both ways.


    In almost every situation it will be cheaper to have the whole family on the same plan.

    However, there are times when it is cheaper to split family members up. One example of a good time to split family members up is when one of the family members has health issues that makes it difficult for them to find affordable coverage. In this case, it can often make sense to find a plan or company that will accept the unhealthy individual and then place the rest of the family members onto a different company or plan that maybe the most desirable for the other family members due to cost or some other reason.

    Here is some more information on family health insurance plans, individual health insurance plans, and also some info specifically on Kansas health insurance:

  • sarah314

    Usually, it would make more sense to have everyone one the same plan.

    However, I have heard of circumstances where some members of the family have a separate policy, because of one family member’s health issue. The healthy family members can stay on a lower premium policy, while the family member with the health complication goes on their own policy.

    It really just depends on the circumstances involved. Make sure to get quotes for each scenario, so that you can make a fully informed decision.

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