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Examining The Average Cost Of Health Insurance For Children
Children are a significant consideration in your health insurance plans. Typically, children are covered under family health insurance plans. If your employer offers a family health plan, then you may want to find out if it covers your kids as well. However, statistics have shown that slightly less than half of American employers cover health insurance for their employees’ kids. Whether this is because of the employer-implemented plans’ peculiarities or because parents prefer to get individual care for their kids, these kids are typically covered elsewhere. As a parent, you don’t want to guess the best option that your child has for health insurance. At the same time, though, you want the best care that you can afford without leading to undue financial stress. It can seem like an overwhelming balancing act. In this article, we’ll delve into the providers of children’s health insurance plans and their cost to you as the parent.
Is it Possible to Buy Health Insurance for Kids Only?
Most individuals that are looking for plans to cover their kids start with family health plans. The rationale is simple – family health plans cover all adults and all kids within the family. Yet some coverage options cater specifically to kids. These plans are typically linked to an ACA-approved plan, meaning that you can access these plans in both the government exchange and the private insurance marketplace.
If you don’t want to enroll yourself into an individual plan, the ACA guarantees extend to a child-only equivalent plan as well. During the annual enrollment period, insurance companies can’t turn away anyone who applies. The ACA also did away with a dependence on pre-existing conditions, meaning that kids are covered, even if they may already have an acute or chronic illness before entering the plan.
Just like other ACA healthcare plans, these offer a series of free preventative measures that help kids stay healthy. Risk assessments for alcohol and drug abuse and behavioral and oral health are covered for free under these plans. Additionally, free coverage extends to various screenings (including for autism and obesity), all standard childhood immunizations (although not covering seasonal flu shots), and particular medication necessary to maintain a certain quality of life.
Again, just like other ACA plans, this children’s plan offers dependency coverage up to the age of 26.
Does Your Employer Offer Dependent Coverage?
Ever since the ACA came into effect, employers have been offering health insurance to their employees in keeping with their dedication to upholding the law. However, while employees can choose their own plans, employers may offer some coverage options with a lower premium, but don’t provide a safety net for dependents. If a parent or guardian is enrolled in Medicare, its coverage also doesn’t extend to children. You should take a close look at your employer’s health insurance offerings and examine if they offer coverage for your kids. There’s nothing more disheartening than having to find out that your employer’s insurance doesn’t cover your kids after they’ve racked up a bill.
Financial Assistance and Government Subsidies
You might be eligible to apply for tax credits to help pay for your health insurance, depending on the amount you make. Typically, the lower your income and the more members your family has, the more of a tax credit you’ll get towards paying your monthly premium. While these subsidies apply to family coverage, they may also be useful in helping you pay for individual child-only coverage as well.
Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) is another avenue you may want to consider. The CHIP program is a federal-state joint initiative and seeks to help low-income families afford healthcare for their kids. The cost of paying for healthcare while on CHIP is extremely low, and in some cases, you can get coverage for free. The requirements for being enrolled in CHIP may vary between states, so you may have to see if you qualify for the initiative.
There are also several other options you may want to examine. Many states offer relief programs to individuals who make less than $98,400 a year in a family of four. Health insurance coverage can deal with many unexpected health problems with kids and still ensure that you have enough money left to meet your obligations. Just like individual plans, you should carefully consider the amount you’re spending on healthcare insurance for your kids.
How Much Does Family Coverage Cost on Average?
The annual cost of an employer-sponsored family plan can be relatively high. Estimates put the contribution from workers at $6,015 per year, while employers contribute well over $20,000 annually. The average annual deductible is also high, averaging out at $1,655. This value is almost double that of the same cost less than ten years ago. These are employer-sponsored family coverage, and child-only plans are likely to cost less. If covered under an ACA plan, the monthly premium is expected to average around $400 a month before subsidies kick in. The individual premium that you pay for your child-only health insurance is likely to vary.
Insurance companies that offer child-only health plans ensure that they conform to ACA standards. As such, they also have metal-rated values from bronze all the way to platinum. Your premiums and deductibles will fluctuate from one end of the scale to the other. Being aware of what insurance companies offer which plans, and what you’ll be paying for is crucial. Even before you seek out subsidies to help pay for your insurance costs, you should know what you’re getting yourself into.
Knowing the Comparisons
What plans do insurance companies offer for children? Are there plans that you could take advantage of that extend coverage to your kids and provide better benefits than your employer-sponsored insurance? How much do those cost? Answering these questions might sound like an uphill battle, but with My Private Health Insurance, you can rest assured that it’ll take a lot less time than you estimate. Our handy head-to-head comparison system ensures that you get a simplified readout of each plan’s costs and what they offer so you can make an informed decision. Check out our website today, and use data to help you make the right choice for you and your family.