Individual health insurance and group health insurance

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 01/26/2009 - 09:02
Individual health insurance is that which is purchased by individuals from the different insurance companies. Group health insurance is that which you may purchase from your employer and is the least expensive of all types.

Group health insurance vs. Individual health insurance

It is believed that group health insurance is stronger than individual health insurance. In terms of insurance rates too individuals who have enrolled into group health insurance plans get a comparatively cheaper deal than those enrolled in individual health insurance plans. However the disadvantage with group health insurance is that if there is any one person with a habit that may affect rates, it applies to the entire group instead of just affecting an individual.

While a group health insurance is designed by an employer keeping the best interests of the employees in mind and hence changes cannot be made easily as it affects the entire group, individual health insurance is easier to customize. What is good for the entire group may not always be good for you. In such situations, individual health insurance seems like a better option. But the high cost of insurance makes it a lesser preferred option. Since fewer people opt for individual health insurance plans, few companies offer this insurance.

Group health insurance plans on the other hand help cut rate since they are way cheaper than individual health insurance. With group health care insurance you can expect to get relatively comprehensive coverage too. While group health insurance covers important factors like car accidents, kitchen accidents, burns, hospital costs and the like and in some cases cost of prescription drugs too.

Besides the above mentioned differences there are few other areas in which an individual health insurance differs from a group health insurance. They are:
  • Pre-conditions: If you have 'pre-existing conditions' it will be difficult for you to get an individual health insurance because your application will be declined. A lot of insurance companies check your health records going back even about 10 years. Applications may be declined if there are major health issues like diabetes, heart disease, cancer etc.
  • Cost: In an individual health insurance the insurance company reserves the right to choose whom they are going to provide coverage to. But in case of group insurance any individual who applies for coverage is entitled to it, no matter what his/her medical history is. This makes the group health insurance more expensive than an individual health plan.
  • Obtaining quotes: Group health insurance quotes are obtained after a long process. There are census forms to be filled complete with employee information, administrative process to be followed before you receive the final quote. Individual health insurance quotes can be quickly and easily obtained online.

Hi, I'm not so lucky..I don't have any health insurance coverage through my employer..any individual policies that you guys would suggest?

Posted: 26 Jan 2009 12:14 Post Subject:

Hi PopCornZiggybee,

Obtaining an individual policy through an agent could be a good option under circumstances that you don't possess any coverage through your employer.

Such a coverage may or may not be expensive than the one provided to you through an employer. Even if it is expensive remember that your health is your real wealth and spending for it is actually securing your own future.


Posted: 27 Jan 2009 09:19 Post Subject:


Such a coverage may or may not be expensive than the one provided to you through an employer.

But we must admit that we all have several options to choose from when we're opting for an individual plan. In comparison, if we're opting for a group insurance plan provided by our employer, over there we do not have so much to choose from. It is a real good experience when we go out shopping for our individual health coverage.

Regards, fatman

Posted: 28 Jan 2009 05:31 Post Subject:

First step - give your doctor's office a call. Ask them what plans they accept.
Even a great policy on paper is worthless if your doctor does not take it.

Second step - Find a local health insurance broker to help you. Every company out there has varying benefits, prices, and coverage areas depending on your zip code so it would be totally unfair to recommend
an one company or policy. A local broker should know these things like the back of their hand, be able to compare benefits, price, and coverage from several different companies so you find the best fit for what you are looking for.

Good Luck

Posted: 28 Jan 2009 01:04 Post Subject:

Hi, I'm not so lucky..I don't have any health insurance coverage through my employer..any individual policies that you guys would suggest?

I have no idea of what part of the world you call home, but normally there are many different types of health insurance coverage like major medical, indemnity plans, or limited benefit plans (sometimes called mini-meds).

The best health insurance plan for you is the one you can afford. If you can't work the insurance premiun into your budget, you probably shouldn't buy that one.

Some people can't pay $300 a month for health insurance, buy maybe can pay $100-$150.

Find a health plan you can afford that will provide at least some insurance benefit in the event of a major illness.

Posted: 31 Jan 2009 03:31 Post Subject:

Start getting some quotes from your local agent. Make sure you get a health plan that will cover your health care needs and one that you can afford.

Posted: 30 Jan 2010 10:35 Post Subject:

The Smart Sense PPO is a good individual plan if you are healthy and do not visit the doctor much.

Posted: 04 Feb 2010 05:31 Post Subject: Individual health plan

You can choose your individual policy among PPO, HMO, indemnity plans and health saving account. Before buying any policy you need to do some research on the coverage provided and the policy rules and guidelines.

Posted: 10 Feb 2010 08:22 Post Subject:

Whoever wrote that big article at the top of the page sure does need to check their facts...

Posted: 15 Feb 2010 01:12 Post Subject:

"If you have 'pre-existing conditions' it will be difficult for you to get an individual health insurance because your application will be declined"

Simply not true in most states. Yes...some conditions are declineable but the vast majority are not.

And yes...I just made up the word "declineable."

Posted: 04 Aug 2012 10:59 Post Subject: Senior citizen health insurance.

Our case is the general one but we have no idea and requesting guidance..We are a fresh pair of Green Card holding parents who have come to New Jersey in Nov.2011.So far no hold or contact in US..Now having decided to stay with our children, the major step is in finding a suitable health insurance plan ,and one affordable too...Our only health problem is our age, 65 and 62 resp., other than that only BP and Cholostrol are the prevailing conditions..So eagerly getting to have proper cover for healh in the event of any adverse conditions cropping up..We would appreciate any suitable advice in this regard...thanks for the time in reading through this and coming forward to help us.

Posted: 05 Aug 2012 06:35 Post Subject:

A person who is age 65 may enroll in Medicare by paying both the Part A and Bart B premiums. That will cost you about $600 per month in 2012. Unless you are working for a company that provides health insurance, you are unlikely to find individual coverage for any lesser amount of money.

Posted: 05 Aug 2012 12:22 Post Subject:

Thanks for the suggestion.But $600 a month for a person who has no other problem as such seems too steep a price to pay for a possible eventuality...Probably if I keep saving this money/prudently investing it/ would pay for itself the day it gets needed..

I am looking for a cheaper and more practical solution where both me and my wife (66 years and 62 years ) are having no major issues right now..Only that we are under daily medicine for BP and Cholostrol issues only.

Looking for a good suggestion

Posted: 05 Aug 2012 08:45 Post Subject:

we are under daily medicine for BP and Cholostrol issues only.

This is not a minor issue. At your current ages, this combination of medication would probably result in a decline or substandard rating for individual insurance.

Come 1-1-2014, that would not be an issue, but if you thought you were going to find individual health insurance for you and your spouse at ages 67 and 64 for less than $1200 per month total, you are sadly mistaken. Obamacare promises that you cannot be declined on the basis of preexisting conditions -- it does not actually promise to provide affordable insurance.

That's the cruel joke the Democrats are playing on the American Public -- "It will be free . . . the insurance companies will pay for it" is the current mantra. But it ignores the fact that Insurance companies are in business to make money. They cannot do that by giving everything away for free. What's free on one end will be made up by higher premiums on the other end. Obama cannot control that. Insurance commissioners cannot completely control that -- they have to allow the insurance companies to make a profit.

Probably if I keep saving this money/prudently investing it/ would pay for itself the day it gets needed..

For this, you need a working crystal ball. Your high blood pressure could cause you to have a stroke tomorrow. Then how much money will you be able to save? Your plan has little chance of working. When it comes to saving enough money for "eventual" health needs, if you have the ability to save $50,000 per year from now until you die, you might just have enough set aside for something major in 20 years.

But don't count on it.

Posted: 06 Aug 2012 12:55 Post Subject: health insurance

Well said that this is cruel to ask someone to ask paying $1200 as insurance payment...there apart you end up with co-pay and additions in so many sweet worded ways..
But the reality is just alarming as a retired person who is totally dependent on their wards for day to day bread itself...
we have been unfortunate for not having been able to save for retirement in any way but could give our children good education for them to be on their own...this is the only consolation when we look back on our lives so far...But the fear is that we are not a total burden on our children on the issue of heath cost ...

so we are desperately looking forward to some way of safegaurding ourselves in this direction and trying to get some advice from experienced readers...

Posted: 06 Aug 2012 02:09 Post Subject:

I have given you the answers/advice you requested. You want to have a pity party or get an answer that you like. Neither of those will happen here. Your situation is not unique. You haven't lived and worked in America long enough to qualify for "premium-free" Medicare Part A -- that requires ten (or more) years of work experience and contributions to Social Security and Medicare.

But the reality is just alarming as a retired person who is totally dependent on their wards for day to day bread itself...we have been unfortunate for not having been able to save for retirement

Here's where you and I have a difference of opinion. You are a new "retired" immigrant to the US. Fine, welcome to America. You earned your retirement somewhere else in the world -- ask that government to supply your medical insurance needs.

But just because you managed to obtain a Green Card doesn't mean you are entitled to welfare as a "retired person" at the expense of all the other American citizens and legal residents who pay taxes and have been here all our lives (or at least more than ten years) and have worked and earned the "fully insured" status required by Social Security. (And not that I expect to collect any benefits under SS or MC in my lifetime, although I might.)

We have actual natural ("born here") citizens who are not qualified for Social Security or Medicare, and would be required to pay the same $600. If anyone deserves special treatment by the government, it's those folks, not you and your spouse. No offense intended -- it's a reality check.

Your problem is not our problem. America may be the land of opportunity people in other parts of the world dream about, but it is not a free ride for those of us who were born here or who come here legally. You actually might have been better off to come here illegally. Illegal aliens get more benefits than some American citizens and legal residents. You might want to consider giving back your Green Cards and not leaving the country as you should -- look at Obama's aunt who has been collecting hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments as an illegal alien here. Don't see her getting deported, do you?

I'm sorry that you don't like the correct answers you are getting from "an experienced reader" to your questions/situation. There is no other choice in America today. Accept it and move on. You are free to save as much money as you choose to. That will not solve your dilemma. At least not perfectly. $50,000 per year x 20 years only = $1,000,000. A single hospital stay following a stroke, including skilled nursing care after discharge, could cost more than that.

If you want the kind of assurances you seem to require, then move to Europe where the governments tend to give medical care to everyone, including illegal aliens, "for free" . . . and most of those governments are (or soon will be) rapidly going bankrupt -- just like America's (which refuses to admit it).

Posted: 11 Oct 2012 06:33 Post Subject:

hi,buddy I have no any life insurance policy from my company I want to take individual life insurance plan can any one suggest me best policy and insurance company .
Thanks In Advance.

Posted: 11 Oct 2012 12:37 Post Subject:

No one can do that given the fact that no one knows anything about you or your need for life insurance. Contact a local life insurance agent to discuss your needs.

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