Diamonds might be a girl’s best friend, but precious metals are something nearly anyone can love, which is why the federal marketplace created “metal levels” to help consumers better understand what they are buying when it comes to a health insurance purchase.
A rule of thumb to understand costs depends on the metal level. A health insurance plan will pay 60%-70%-80% or 90% of total health insurance costs depending on the mineral plan you buy. Bronze isn’t as valuable of a metal as Gold or Platinum, so if you have a Bronze metal level plan, you pay 40% of the costs for healthcare, and your insurance company pays 60%. The more you spend on your precious metal level healthcare plan, the more your health insurance company will cover. If you are healthy and don’t plan to use your health insurance above and beyond preventive services, a cheaper metal plan will be the most affordable.
A moderate priced insurance plan, Silver plans have a range of deductibles and some offer prescription drug coverage that can include a separate deductible and copay. Silver plans can be an excellent option for individuals who use medical services once or twice a year, or for those who are healthy but need prescription drug coverage to help lower their out-of-pocket expenses.
Gold metal level plans are the next step up for individuals who might suffer from a condition like diabetes, and use medical services throughout the year and take prescription drugs. While Gold plans are the second most expensive plan level available in the marketplace, an individual can save on out-of-pocket expenses overall by buying a plan that pays for approximately 80% of their healthcare costs.
The most expensive metal level with the best overall coverage, Platinum plans are an excellent choice for individuals with multiple chronic conditions. If you visit several doctors each year, anticipate at least one emergency room visit and a lengthier in-patient hospital stay during the course of 12 months, and take multiple prescriptions drugs, Platinum plans offer the most comprehensive coverage.
The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of Healthcare, Inc. and HealthCare.com.