Don’t get a medical discount plan by mistake because it’s cheaper than health insurance

Be aware that medical discount plans are not health insurance. They do not do the same thing as Jacksonville health insurance either.

You’ve likely seen the ads on TV or even in print, touting the cost cutting convenience of medical discount plans. Please note before you read further, medical discount plans ARE NOT HEALTH INSURANCE. Furthermore, most hospitals and doctors do not have to honor medical discount plans and in many cases, they won’t.

The claims sure sound good by teasing people with one liners like: discounts of up to 60 percent, no deductible or co-pays and pre-existing conditions are no problem. Who wouldn’t want to save money on their health care costs these days? Look before you leap and find out exactly what it is you are buying before you buy it. If you don’t take that extra precautionary step, you might get an unexpected surprise later.

Medical discount programs come in many forms, ranging from a medical discount plan to a discount program or even a card. Financially, they’re attractive, there’s no getting around that. And, yes, medical discount plans may be of use to some consumers, but – and this is a huge but – they are not the same thing as health insurance. They do not pay any of your health care costs. Instead, you pay a fee for a list of health care service providers, etc. who are willing to give you a discount because you’re in a plan. In other words, you have no health care coverage – period.

Also, be very aware that some of the medical discount plans boast they provide huge discounts from hundreds of providers offering a wide variety of services. Quite often, there is no substance to these claims and you are paying a lot for virtually nothing. This isn’t to say that if you want other health care options that you shouldn’t check out medical discount plans. They may be what you want; but be cautious.

If you aren’t sure about the plans, call the state insurance commissioner and find out if they’re registered to sell health insurance in your state. If they aren’t, find someone else that sells Jacksonville health insurance and not a medical discount plan. In other words, if you want the insurance company to pay your medical bills (or portions thereof), you want a health insurance plan and NOT a discount plan.

If you don’t know which is which and can’t tell the difference between health insurance and a medical discount plan, call a licensed local Jacksonville health insurance agent/broker. They have all the information you need and can explain the differences. Their advice is free and it’s often advice that will save you money and get you a good deal on health insurance, NOT a medical discount plan.

Evan Tunis is with, the leading provider of Florida and Jacksonville health insurance quotes. To learn more about Florida health insurance, visit -insurance.html.

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Tuesday, November 16th, 2010 Articles