In the US healthcare system, there are several factors contributing to high costs being passed on to patients, which can leave many people with debts from which they can never recover. New research published by the Kaiser Family Foundation and Healthy Research & Educational Trust shows that healthcare insurance premiums and deductibles are rising steadily each year. The average premium increased by three percent, while deductibles soared by 12 percent in 2016. These rising costs are stressful for consumers, but it is possible to reduce these often unplanned expenses through market research and frugal decision making.

    Neglecting health issues is not the answer as illness and disease can worsen and even become life threatening without specialist assistance. Selecting a suitable health insurance package is critical to access the treatment you need, when you need it. A high-quality health plan will ensure your family’s needs are always taken care of, without draining resources. Health insurance is therefore the only worthwhile long-term option to consider, but it can be expensive in the short-term. However, adopting just a few money saving tips can make all the difference to your financial situation.

    General saving tips

    Reviewing your medical expenses and shopping around for the best insurance plan is the best place to start when targeting money savings. You should create a comprehensive list of your family’s medical needs, calculate annual expenses, and compare these against the market averages for each provider. Ensure you understand the differences between policy options such as those from a Preferred Provider Organization (HMO), Point of Service (PPO), and Health Management Organization (POS). Knowledge is power when it comes to healthcare savings.

    Also, be frugal when selecting what you need. Make sure to only pay for coverage that covers your health requirements, and do not over insure. You could also consider joint coverage to share the cost burden, though you should be aware of the stipulations for these agreements. Outside of insurance, it is possible to take part in voluntary health screenings to receive a health profile and recommendations to keep on top of health issues. Almost 200,000 people in the US took advantage of these opportunities last year. Buying medication in bulk from a pharmacy can also help to reduce Rx costs.

    Dental care

    Maintaining a healthy smile need not be so costly either. To save money in the long term, schedule regular cleanings every six months so that small problems such as cavities can be fixed before they become serious and much more expensive to take care of. Regular trips to specialists such as Dentists in Raleigh, North Carolina, should be supplemented by a robust brushing and flossing routine, which will keep your teeth clean and healthy and reduce unnecessary costs.

    However, even the best cleaning methods cannot always prevent dental issues, and you may have to look at ways to fund more expensive procedures. Purchasing a dental discount plan, if you are not eligible for insurance with an employer, will ensure that all dental work is discounted. You can also save money if your dentist is willing to offer a discount for a cash payment. Additionally, they may be able to set up a payment plan if you do not want the worries associated with credit cards and interest.