Sunday, October 24, 2021

Play

Some states entice people back to the workplace by increasing safety standards and higher minimum wage; Bannon held in Contempt of Congress; and the latest cyber security concerns.

Play

House votes to hold Bannon in contempt of Congress; Trump announces new social media platform TRUTH Social; and the Biden administration says it will continue to expel migrants under Title 42.

Play

An all-Black Oklahoma town joins big cities in seeking reparations; a Kentucky vaccination skeptic does a 180; telehealth proves invaluable during pandemic; and spooky destinations lure tourists at Halloween.

What to Keep in Mind as Enrollment for 2022 Health Coverage Opens

Play

Wednesday, September 22, 2021   

SEATTLE - Washingtonians soon will have a chance to change their health coverage, and a few tips can help folks pick the best plan for themselves or their family.

About 240,000 Washingtonians who aren't covered through their employer get insurance through the state health exchange, where financial help is available to pay premiums. The open enrollment for the exchange is Nov. 1 through Dec. 15.

Dr. Rhonda Randall, chief medical officer, employer and individual, at UnitedHealthcare, said people should keep next year's plans in mind when choosing their coverage.

"Anticipate what your expenses are for next year," she said. "So, are you anticipating you're going to need to have a certain procedure, or you've recently been diagnosed with a specific condition? Or maybe you're planning to expand your family."

The Medicare open-enrollment period is Oct. 15 through Dec. 7. Randall said people on Medicare need to consider a separate, prescription drug or "Part D" program and a Medicare Advantage or supplement plan for additional benefits, such as prescription drugs, vision and dental coverage.

Nationwide, about 180 million Americans get their insurance through an employer-sponsored plan. Randall said employers typically set aside two to three weeks for open enrollment at the end of the year. She said people should think about mental-health coverage as well.

"We have seen an increased interest in mental-health needs lately, so that's another important thing to check on," she said. "Does your employer have an Employee Assistance Program, and does the medical plan benefits that they're offering have the mental health coverage that you're looking for?"

Randall also noted that virtual care is becoming a greater priority for some people.

"Those visits are designed really to be for specific conditions - convenience care, sometimes the maintenance of chronic conditions - and often are more affordable, as well," she said.

She advised people to look into the wellness programs that health plans offer, and any specialty benefits. She added that it's important to understand the terminology - premium, deductible, copay and others - and said UnitedHealthcare offers a guide to these terms on its website.

Disclosure: United Healthcare contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
California has collected more than 600 tons of unwanted prescription drugs since the Take-Back Day program began in 2010. (Dodgerton Skillhause/Morguefile)

Health and Wellness

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, when the Drug Enforcement Administration encourages everyone to clean out …


Health and Wellness

BALTIMORE - This month marks the four-year anniversary of the #MeToo movement, and an art project aims to help incarcerated survivors heal by telling …

Social Issues

OGDEN, Utah - Utah is one of only a handful of states that taxes food, but one state legislator says taxing groceries should become a thing of the …


In a new poll, 71% of all registered voters support strengthening rules to reduce oil and gas methane pollution, including 73% of Independents and 50% of Republicans. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

CASPER, Wyo. - A strong majority of voters across party lines say they want national rules similar to those passed in Wyoming to reduce methane …

Social Issues

BISMARCK, N.D. - A portion of American Rescue Plan funding sent to North Dakota has yet to be divvied up. Groups that want to improve the child-care …

Gov. Tom Wolf already has increased the minimum wage for state employees and contractors, which is set to reach $15 an hour by July 2024. (Gov. Tom Wolf/Flickr)

Social Issues

PITTSBURGH - As businesses across the country deal with a massive labor shortage, Pennsylvania aims to entice people back to the workplace by …

Environment

ALBANY, N.Y. - Environmental groups want Gov. Kathy Hochul to sign a bill that mandates monitoring the state's drinking water for "emerging …

Social Issues

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Gov. Mike Parson is facing calls to get the Missouri Cybersecurity Commission off the ground after it was created by the …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021