A Health Insurance Guide For You And The Family
Where Do I Get These Health Plans?
You may be able to get group health coverage—either indemnity
or managed care—through your job or the job of a family member.
Many employers allow you to join or change health plans once
a year during open enrollment. But once you choose a plan,
you must keep it for a year. Discuss choices and limits with
your employee benefits office.
If you are self-employed or if your company does not offer
group policies, you may need to buy individual health insurance.
Individual policies cost more than group policies. Some organizations—such
as unions, professional associations, or social or civic groups—offer
health plans for members. You may want to talk to an insurance
broker, who can tell you more about the indemnity and managed
care plans that are available for individuals. Some States
also provide insurance for very small groups or the self-employed.
Americans age 65 or older and people with certain disabilities
can be covered under Medicare, a Federal health insurance
program. In many parts of the country, people covered under
Medicare now have a choice between managed care and indemnity
plans. They also can switch their plans for any reason. However,
they must officially tell the plan or the local Social Security
Office, and the change may not take effect for up to 30 days.
Call your local Social Security office or the State office
on aging to find out what is available in your area.