What you need to know about the different health insurance types.









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Catastrophic Plans










When can coverage begin?Usually 45 daysUsually 45 daysUsually 45 daysUsually 2 weeks
Will I be subject to a tax penalty?NoNoYesYes
Can I buy it on a state exchange?NoNoNoTypically No
Can I be denied for pre-existing conditions?NoNoSometimesYes
Will it cover ACA mandated benefits?YesYesSometimesNo
Can it be purchased with a government subsidy?  NoYesNo 






Is Vision Insurance Worth It?

Deciding what health coverage’s you need can be overwhelming. Vision coverage is one of those add on items that you can either take or leave it. It is important to note that vision insurance does not cover all things pertaining to your eye. Medical insurance covers things like accidents, surgery and eye diseases.

What vision insurance covers.

  • Eyes exams
  • Glasses
  • Contacts

What vision coverage cost.

Vision insurance through the group market is not very expensive and is typically between $3-$7 a month. Also, getting coverage through the market allows for broader coverage which includes more in network doctors and more benefits for glasses and contacts. Vision insurance that is not through your employer will cost $15 – $60 month for individuals and families. Most plans offer the same benefits with a $15 copay for an exam, about $120 for glasses or contacts with a discount on any additional amount.

If you were to pay out of pocket, typically an eye exam costs about $60 and a pair of glasses can range from $100-$500. Contacts can be between $100-$200. Depending on what your vision needs are, the cost of coverage needs to be weighed. If you don’t currently wear glasses or contacts, your needs are not as great as someone who does. In addition, routine physicals by your medical doctor often includes a basic eye exam.

What is CHIP?

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides low-cost insurance converge to children in families who earn too much money to qualify for state Medicaid. If your child(ren) are eligible for CHIP, you do not have to purchase an insurance plan to cover them. Each state has its own rules and guidelines, but the CHIP program works closely with the states Medicaid program.

You can apply any time of year, by either calling 800-318-2596 or by filling out the application through the Health Insurance Marketplace and if your child(ren) qualify, coverage can start immediately.

What CHIP covers.

CHIP benefits are different in each state. But all states provide comprehensive coverage, including:

  • Routine check-ups
  • Immunizations
  • Doctor visits
  • Prescriptions
  • Dental and vision care
  • Inpatient and outpatient hospital care
  • Laboratory and X-ray services
  • Emergency services

There is no cost for routine ‘well child’ doctor and dental visits under CHIP. However, there may be co-payments for other services. In addition, some states charge a monthly premium for CHIP coverage but you will never pay more than 5% of your families yearly income.