In Nigeria, we probably don’t hear people talk about health insurance all the time. Many are unaware of the stress, money, and time it can save them.
You might feel like you don’t understand much about health insurance. That’s OK, because, honestly, it can be a pretty confusing subject.
In this article, we will go through the basics of health insurance.
What Is Health Insurance?
Health insurance is a way of paying for your medical bills and health care costs. It can make it easier to pay your health care bills, and help you get the care you need.
Imagine you get sick and go to the hospital; you will have to pay for the consultation, drugs, etc. All of which does not come cheap. If you have health insurance, you will not pay out of pocket because the bills will go to your health insurance plan.
How Health Insurance works
When you have health insurance, your medical bills go first to your health plan. Then, they pay for some or all that bill according to the plan’s details.
This means you don’t have to pay for your medical bills every time you visit the hospital. Health insurance will cover things like annual check-ups, vaccinations, preventive health, and surgeries.
Why should I get Health Insurance?
There are two significant reasons to have health insurance:
Health insurance supports you if you get sick
If you unexpectedly get sick or injured, health insurance is there to help cover costs that you likely can’t afford to pay on your own. Health care is expensive and can become a financial burden when it’s not something you plan for. Surgery, emergency care, prescription drugs, lab work, scans, and examinations can add up very quickly.
These costs can be high enough to make you go bankrupt or turn down the care you need because you can’t afford out-of-pocket.
With health insurance, you’re not facing those costs as an individual; there’s an insurance plan helping you cover the costs and help you through the confusion of medical billing.
To avoid dealing with medical bills in a time of care and need, it’s advisable to make smart financial decisions ahead of time and sign up for health insurance before you get sick.
Health insurance helps you avoid getting sick
Another primary reason it’s important to have health insurance is that it makes it easier for you to stay healthy.
Having health insurance makes it easier for you to access – that is, find and pay for – routine and preventive health care. This includes:
- Annual checkups
- Vaccinations (flu shots, MMR, etc.)
- Blood tests and lab work
- Scans and screenings
These all play a role in keeping you healthy and diagnosing any illness you might have as soon as possible.
In addition to this, health insurance helps cover the costs of managing any chronic conditions you might have, such as diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, ulcer, hypertension, or depression. This makes it easier for you to stay healthy.
Kids, Infants, and Pregnant mothers regularly need routine and preventive care to keep them healthy and thriving. Early intervention prevents future health problems and can even save lives.
Health insurance goes beyond physical health. It covers mental and behavioral checkups and cares.
Can I afford Health Insurance?
Health insurance plans these days are very much affordable with health insurance providers like Reliance HMO providing plans for as low as ₦3500 with a medical cover of N1.2M per year. Here are some of the benefits you will get for this little investment.
- Visit any hospital you want
- Get free primary health care
- Free access to a nearby gym
- See any specialist doctor
- Get free dental and optical care
- Telemedicine – Talk to a doctor anytime
- Get surgical procedures done
- Pay monthly. Annual payments not required.
It’s far more likely that you can afford Health insurance plan than you can afford to pay for a surgery, illness, or emergency room visit out of your pocket.
What if I don’t get sick? Don’t I lose money?
You may be wondering, “If I sign up for a health Insurance plan, pay my monthly premium, but I don’t get sick and don’t get any health care, then I’ve lost money.”
That’s not quite right, though.
First, there are many health insurances benefits you can use even without getting sick, such as vaccinations and check-ups, that help keep you healthy over a period.
In conclusion, your body is the only place you must live in. Take care of it and get yourself a health insurance plan and save yourself the stress of out-of-pocket payment.