Health Republic Insurance

      Health Republic Insurance CEO Dawn Bonder stopped by with important tips on what consumers need to know when buying health insurance.

      For more information call 888-990-6635 or head to the Health Republic Insurance website.

      Shopping for health insurance can be an overwhelming process. Where should people begin?

      Every health insurance consumer is different, so the first step is to determine what kind of consumer you are.

      Are you a relatively healthy individual? Do you have a family? Are you a small business owner? Do you or someone in your family have a condition that needs managing?

      Once you determine the kind of consumer you are, it's important to anticipate your health needs over the entire year.

      What health needs should people take into consideration?

      While it's impossible to know how our health will change over the course of a year, it's often possible to take into account regular doctor's visits, and any needs that require that you see a specialist.

      Some questions to ask yourself are: How often do you or your family go to the doctor? Do you take any prescriptions? Do you have an ongoing condition that requires regular appointments and management?

      Taking these health needs into consideration is a great jumping off point for consumers.

      Let's talk about provider networks and access to health care.

      Once you've indicated your health needs, you need to determine your care preferences.

      Do you prefer a relationship with one primary care doctor? Do you travel? Do you see specialists? Are you interested in a care team approach or alternative care?

      Determining your desired doctor-patient relationship will help you select the right network for you.

      Health Republic partners with Providence Health Plan for use of its statewide provider network, which means we have an extensive statewide network of providers, practitioners and facilities.

      We also offer members robust complementary care coverage for providers, such as chiropractors, massage therapists, naturopathic physicians and acupuncturists.

      So it sounds like you should do your homework before you even start shopping.

      Exactly. With the right information, you can be a smarter health insurance consumer. Tips:

      1. Look beyond deductibles and premiums to determine which plan is the highest value to you. Lowest premium is not always the best value.

      2. Identify the list of services you need annually and compare among plans.

      3. Crunch all the numbers - factor in premiums, deductibles, copays, number of anticipated doctors visits, etc.

      4. Consider the cost of co-pays and other expenses. These can quickly add up! Many Health Republic plans provide a certain number of visits with primary care practitioners for free, since those visits are so important to maintaining good health.

      5. Finally, understand if you quality for subsidies and what they might save you.

      Where can people get more information about Health Republic's plans?

      People can learn more and enroll directly on our website, Or they can call us at 1.888.990.6635.

      For those who qualify for subsidies, we can help direct you to the right resource at Cover Oregon.