PolicyAdvantage.com: Online California eResources

**Take a copy of PolicyAdvantage.com’s California health insurance guide with you, and share it. Download below in .PDF format. Questions? Start a chat with us in lower right, right here at the webpage.

CALIFORNIA HEALTH COVERAGE GUIDE (click here to download PDF)

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California: welcome aboard. Located in Los Angeles, California, PolicyAdvantage.com is happy to announce that our products and services are available across the entire state. We look forward to working with you.

As your independent insurance agent, we represent you, our client… and help you find the exact policy that fits you best.

Our number one goal is to help individuals, families, small businesses, and large companies maximize the efficiency of their health insurance plans:

  • Improve Coverage
  • Add Flexibility by Offering a Variety of Plan Selections (HMOs, PPOs, etc.)
  • Provide the Most Current Health Insurance Financial Planning Strategies
  • Save Time
  • Save Money
  • Find Your Physician & Hospital Networks
  • Maximize Tax Incentives
  • Find Dental/Vision Plans
  • Provide Direct Access to Expert Licensed Agents
  • …And more.

At PolicyAdvantage.com, we provide a broad range of products and services. We have the capacity to help just about anyone with their health coverage: individuals, families, small businesses, and large companies. Our services are fee-free (ie: premiums are the same, if you work with or without us as your agent). Your single point of contact. All in ONE place.

Products available in California:

  • Individual & Family Plans
  • Federal Health Insurance Exchange Plans (www.CoveredCA.com)
  • Small Group Health Insurance Plans (for employers of 1-50 employees)
  • Large Group Health Insurance Plans (for employers with 50+ employees)
  • Individual, Family, and Group Dental Plans
  • Individual, Family, and Group Vision Plans
  • Individual, Family, and Group Life Insurance Plans

At PolicyAdvantage.com, we contract with most of California’s leading health insurance companies:

  • Blue Shield of California
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • Oscar Health
  • HealthNet
  • Molina
  • …+Many others.

Additionally, we’re a Covered California Certified Insurance Agency. We are able to help you navigate the state health insurance exchange, where you might be eligible for premium assistance, based on your household size and modified adjusted gross annual income.

Lastly, PolicyAdvantage.com is a “digitally friendly” agency. Just a simple direct message away anywhere online, our clients love our custom-branded ePackets delivered straight to their email. Connect with us online today. Lets start designing and implementing a health coverage program that you, your family, or your company’s employees will love.

Thanks for stopping by, we hope you found our information to be helpful. Check back at our blog to get further information about funding healthcare. Also, please share with your friends, clients, colleagues, and family. Here are a few of our other information outlets:

Home Page: http://www.PolicyAdvantage.com

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/PolicyAdvantage

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PolicyAdvantage

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/PolicyAdvantage

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/PolicyAdvantage

Word Press: http://www.policyadvantage.wordpress.com

ACA & COVID 19: Boston College “Squared Away Blog” Interviews President of PolicyAdvantage.com Tyson Lester

President of PolicyAdvantage.com Tyson Lester, ChHC®, REBC®, RHU® recently sat down for a one-on-one interview with Kimberly Blanton (former Boston Globe reporter) of the “Squared Away Blog” at the Boston College Center for Retirement Research. Boston College is one of New England’s largest private universities, and is classified as an “R-1” research institution– engaged in the highest levels of research activity. Below is a transcript of the entire interview, and you can link to the official interview at the “Squared Away Blog” right here: ACA Insurance in the Time of COVID-19 (click to visit).

This is a re-blog, and the full interview is a Copyright© of the “Squared Away Blog,” and the Boston College Center for Retirement Research. All rights reserved. You can visit them here:

We hope you enjoy the interview below, and the important information it provides!

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The urgency of the pandemic ushered in important changes to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), including a steep reduction in premiums for health insurance policies purchased on the state and federal exchanges through the end of 2022. Now Congress is debating reforms such as making the larger premium subsidies permanent and broadening the reach of the federal-state Medicaid program beyond the expansion introduced in the 2010 ACA.

We spoke with Tyson Lester, an independent insurance agent in southern California, about what the changes so far have meant for consumers. Tyson is licensed to sell policies in California, Florida, and Texas.

Tyson LesterTyson Lester

Has the Affordable Care Act promoted disease prevention and care during the pandemic?

Some of the best feedback we got from our clients was about using the telehealth and remote options in their policies. It’s been an option for quite some time, but it was utilized more frequently during COVID-19. People were able to access primary care physicians, receive consultation and be diagnosed with COVID over the phone. It was amazing. It helped them because: 1) they were able to just make a phone call; 2) they were able to receive good consultation; and 3) if testing was necessary, they were able to go to a testing facility.

In response to COVID, did you see a rush into ACA policies last year?

ACA enrollment increased last year, but consumers’ response to the pandemic was mixed. In 2020, 12 states and Washington D.C. temporarily reopened their health insurance exchanges but people didn’t have the additional premium assistance to make it more affordable. In the remaining states, working people who lacked employer health insurance didn’t have the ACA as another option for coverage when the pandemic hit.

As for the workers who did have employer health insurance last year but then lost their jobs, they had to make a tough decision between whether they wanted to elect their employer’s COBRA, which is expensive, go uninsured, or go on the insurance exchange. But many people weren’t fully aware of the ACA’s longstanding option: when someone loses group health insurance from their employer, they can buy what’s known as a special enrollment ACA plan. In Texas, for example, part of the reason for last year’s increase in the uninsured population, in the midst of COVID-19, was that people who lost their jobs – and their employer coverage – weren’t even aware the ACA exchanges were available to them. We actually put a flyer together for this specific topic last year, because it was so important.

In March, the American Rescue Plan significantly increased the ACA premium subsidies through December 2022. What has been the effect?

For anybody who was previously enrolled, the American Rescue Plan significantly reduced premiums in California, Texas, and Florida and potentially their total out-of-pocket costs. As a result of the larger subsidies, I saw an influx of new customers throughout this year on California’s exchange, which – unlike most other states – opened a special enrollment for all of 2021. Earlier this year, the federal exchange opened, which caused an influx of customers too. This is where Texas, Florida and many other states sell their ACA policies. All states on the federal exchange shut down again in August but will reopen for 2022 in November.

In California, I’m anticipating we’ll see a busy enrollment this fall, because there’s more outreach here than in Texas and Florida. A lot of people are coming to the realization there’s more subsidy available. It takes some time for the general public to realize that. When they first passed healthcare reform, many people didn’t know what the exchanges were or how they worked. When word gets out, you see more people show up and use the premium assistance.

Will people drop their coverage when the federal premium subsidies run out?

It’s hard to say. But if clients see a significant increase in their premiums and can’t afford $200, $300 or $400 more per month, that can be a hit to their household budgets. It’s unfortunate in a pandemic if they would have to drop their health insurance.

Why are the ACA insurance deductibles going up?

The cost of health care and medications increase nearly every year, and the more the insurance companies are able to charge someone on the deductible the less they can charge in premiums. Another way to think about this is that the premiums are increasing at a lower rate than they would if they weren’t also increasing the deductibles.

Have rising costs affected your customers?

Deductibles are high and getting higher, especially for people whose income isn’t low enough to qualify them for the cost-sharing reductions available in some plans sold on the exchanges. But what I have also seen over the past few years is that the insurance companies are redesigning their benefits and making certain medical services more accessible – these are medical services that are not counted against the dollar deductible. That’s a good thing, and it mainly applies to the Bronze or Silver Plans.

For example, in some Silver Plans, the only thing subject to the deductible might be inpatient hospitalizations. Anything else – primary care, X-rays, emergency room visits – aren’t part of the deductible. So, when you go to the primary care doctor or get an X-ray, you might have a $35 copay. For a bigger expense like an outpatient surgery, you can find Silver plans in California where that surgery is not subject to the deductible – so the patient’s cost would be coinsurance only, which is 20 percent of the entire surgery bill, with no deductible having to be paid. These details really matter and determine how much people are spending out of pocket.

The policies offered across the country are standardized – Platinum, Gold, Silver, Bronze – but many hospitals and doctors don’t accept ACA plans. Most doctors accept Medicare. So why is the ACA different?

When they opened the exchanges in 2014, it created an influx of new patients into local health care systems. Those facilities or doctors had to make a determination, based on their caseloads, of whether they would accept the ACA’s negotiated rates for their services and how they would manage that influx. The ACA is mostly HMOs, which reimburse at a lower rate than PPOs. HMOs pay the same amount for every single patient and PPOs pay on a fee-per-service basis. Many established healthcare providers that are in demand have declined to accept individual and family ACA plans. It’s not to say this is always the case, and there is definitely access to quality care within ACA plans. But you want to keep this in mind so you’re making informed decisions when selecting a health plan.

Do the more limited options in the ACA plans affect the quality of care?

Yes, they can. For example, in California, some of the top-notch facilities are tougher to access. In the Los Angeles metro market, for example, a lot of doctors, hospitals, and healthcare facilities won’t accept ACA. UCLA’s medical system, which is No. 1 in California, only accepts one plan – Blue Shield of California’s PPO – on the state’s exchange. Cedars Sinai accepts a limited amount of ACA exchange plans. Texas had a similar thing happen. A good agent should listen to the clients and help them navigate that system.

In addition, the health insurance companies that offer on-exchange plans typically offer fewer plans than they do in the small-group employer market. The way this will be improved is through increased competition among the insurers. But it’s a region-by-region situation. Some places, including Texas and Florida, have seen increases in new plans that are available on the exchange and some areas have seen decreases since ACA’s inception.

Can you explain what it is about each state’s environment – regulations, population size or the insurers operating there – that affects the types of plans and, by extension, the quality of care available in ACA policies?

The exchanges operate the same way whether the customer is in Florida, Texas, or California. When it comes to benefit levels – copays, deductibles, out-of-pocket costs – there’s not much of a difference. The differences often come down to what is convenient for the insurance companies and what the state regulations are. Each insurer has found a niche market in the state they cater to. Where we’re seeing more competition is with smaller companies – names you haven’t heard of like Ambetter and AvMed. Florida Blue and Cigna operate in Florida, but the smaller regional providers are more prevalent in that state.

It’s different in California. Regional insurers like L.A. Care sell policies on the exchange but the big three insurers are the most prevalent: Kaiser Permanente, Blue Shield of California, and Health Net.

What makes California different than, say, Florida?

The variables include population size and regulation. Another big thing in California is that the companies on the exchange have local headquarters and are very familiar with the state’s regulations. California is also more pro-ACA, so it has done things other states have not. For example, they reintroduced an individual mandate [to buy insurance] after it was eliminated at the federal level. So more of the population is going to participate, because there’s a $750 minimum tax for not participating. California initiated a state subsidy too, which is paid on top of the federal subsidy and offsets the costs that consumers pay in premiums.

Residents of Florida and Texas have access to federal premium assistance only. Additionally, Florida and Texas didn’t expand Medicaid so that leaves a lot of poor people out of the health insurance system. To qualify for Medicaid in Florida and Texas, which did not expand their Medicaid programs under the ACA, your income must fall below the poverty level.

But in California, if your income is under 138 percent of poverty, you will be eligible for Medi-Cal, which is the state’s Medicaid. We as agents are trained to cover low-income people in California and agree to help them enroll in Medi-Cal. Medi-Cal and ACA are on the same computer system and are integrated. In Texas and Florida, I don’t know if low-income people are automatically enrolled in Medicaid.

What do you see as the biggest issues for people who buy ACA policies?

The Affordable Care Act really helped a lot of people with guaranteed issue: every plan has to accept people regardless of their health, and the insurers are required to cover 10 essential health benefits, from maternity care to colonoscopies.

Where the law didn’t work very well is for the people who aren’t getting subsidies because they earn too much to qualify for them. Their premiums have gotten very expensive, and they’ve had a hard time with the increases. But I think the biggest issue would be more limited access and narrower networks of doctors and hospitals than the employer plans have.

How might the healthcare exchanges be improved for consumers?

The policies need to be more affordable but that’s a difficult issue to solve, because it would require more government funding to help offset consumers’ costs. For example, the policies aren’t very affordable for people who earn too much to qualify for a subsidy. In California, the combined federal and state subsidies go to people earning up to 600 percent of poverty, but at the top of the range, you get only a very limited subsidy of maybe $10 to $50. If you’re paying $770 for a premium, what’s the difference between paying $800 and $775? The subsidy limit in Florida, Texas and other states that sell on the federal exchange is 400 percent of the poverty level.

One lower-cost option is the short-term insurance plans being sold in Texas and Florida – they’re outlawed in California. In 2017, when Congress repealed the individual mandate, the duration of these short-term, or “skinny,” plans was also extended from three months to three years. People who couldn’t get affordable ACA plans really turned to the skinny plans, which are not sold on the state insurance exchanges. But they don’t have the essential protections required by ACA plans, and you’ve got no guaranteed access if you have a pre-existing condition. The skinny plans may be better than nothing if you’re healthy. But I don’t like them.

Squared Away writer Kim Blanton invites you to follow us on Twitter @SquaredAwayBC. To stay current on our blog, please join our free email list. You’ll receive just one email each week – with links to the two new posts for that week – when you sign up here. This blog is supported by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.

The Great Global Lion Debate: Who’s Your Favorite Lion Ever?

It’s our favorite question. President of PolicyAdvantage.com Tyson Lester and our social media team have been asking: who’s YOUR favorite lion ever? And we’ve gotten lots of AWESOME answers from all over the world (posted at the bottom of this blog post).

The lion is the identity of our company — it projects our image to our clients, colleagues, and friends. And, it’s a very universally diverse symbol… most commonly associated with traits like: majesty, royalty, strength, courage, justice, and might.

Additionally, we contribute to www.ProtectingAfricanLions.org (click to visit), a non-profit dedicated to the conservation and protection of the African Lion. Visit their website and pickup a charming, affordable ($21) designer bracelet. They’re hand-made by South African designer jeweler Lianne Landman. A significant portion of proceeds goes directly to protecting the African Lion, whose population has declined 90% in the past 75 years.

So… have you been nominated to join the debate? We’re glad that you’re here, and excited to hear what you’ve got to say. Art lions, sports lions, historical lions, movie lions, royal lions, and many, many more. Join the “great lion debate” community with us today. We’d formally like to ask you: who’s YOUR… favorite lion ever?

(**Editor’s note: if you’re reading this blog post and weren’t nominated on social media, but want to post your favorite lion ever in the comments, please do! We want to hear from you.)

Global Health Coverage: Online Resources

We’re living in a more globally mobile world, and remote work is anticipated to grow exponentially by the year 2030. Individuals, families, and companies are increasingly turning to portable, global health coverage.

For that reason, we’ve put together a suite of global health coverage services for you online here at PolicyAdvantage.com. And the best part about it? You can consult and contact us right here at our webpage.

Your health is one of your most important assets while you’re working abroad. Whether you’re an individual or family, or a company who understands the importance of offering health insurance to your employees… we’ve got you covered. We offer health plans throughout the world:

  • Individual & Family Plans: North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia, MENA (Middle East/North Africa), Africa, Australia, and more.
  • Small Businesses & Corporate Plans: North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia, MENA (Middle East/North Africa), Africa, Australia, and more.

No-matter where you’re from (or where your company is located), we can custom design your international & expat health coverage. Individuals and families can feel confident that they’re covered, and your employees will love the valuable employee benefit if you’re an employer.

We contract with the best international and expat health insurance companies in the industry. Companies that are household names: Cigna Global, Allianz Care, Anthem GeoBlue, IMG Global, and others. Our experts hand-pick your health plan from this portfolio of global health insurance policies based on three distinct characteristics:

  1. Cost. The best priced plans, at the greatest overall value. Many policies only cost a few dollars per day.
  2. Quality of Coverage. Reputable insurance companies, strong networks, and superior plan benefits.
  3. Technology. Easy management of your plan throughout the world on computers and smart phones.

You can feel assured that your health is covered while you’re abroad, in a new place, under new conditions that you might not be use-to. Accidents and sicknesses can happen. In more severe cases (or in cases where there is limited access to proper care locally)… medical evacuations are sometimes necessary. It’s refreshing to know that your health is insured, and that you can concentrate on your day-to-day activities.

Our team has selected plans that provide you with access to medical services in over 200 countries worldwide. These medical networks include thousands of professionals across the globe who provide services like:

  • International Inpatient Care: Surgery & consultation, hospital accommodation, cancer care.
  • International Outpatient Care: Drugs, doctor visits, health & wellness.
  • Medical Evacuation: Evacuation in the event treatment is not available locally.
  • International Vision & Dental: Eye exams; routine and/or major dental treatments.

Connect with us online right here at PolicyAdvantage.com today. We can get you plan information, prices, and put you in contact with a licensed expert who will consult with you, and design your program.

Send us an email from our contact page, or chat with us in the bottom right using our chat feature. It’s easy and convenient to connect. You’ll enjoy peace of mind while you’re covered globally with us… 24/7. 365.

PolicyAdvantage.com Introduces Health Sherpa: An Official Enrollment Partner of HealthCare.gov

PolicyAdvantage.com is proud to announce that we’ve recently partnered with Health Sherpa, an official enrollment partner of HealthCare.gov (the federal ACA/Obamacare health insurance exchange).

Health Sherpa is a California-based technology company, and industry-leading enrollment platform that helps individuals and families shop and compare ACA-compliant plans. Fast, easy Obamacare enrollment, over 3 million individuals and families have enrolled through this cutting-edge technology… now exclusively available at PolicyAdvantage.com.

With full, unparalleled access from the comfort of your own home, health insurance shopping & enrollment during COVID-19 has never been easier! Here are the benefits:

Over 3 million online ACA enrollments.
✅A modern, cutting-edge user experience (UX similar to shopping for airline tickets). The convenient layout makes it easy for you to shop and compare top health insurance policies from the best insurance companies in your area.
Seamless integration with HealthCare.gov, the federal health insurance marketplace. In other words, this technology will determine if you qualify for premium assistance (tax credits based on your gross income and household size), and show you the cost of your health plan once these credits have been applied. 4 out of 5 people receive assistance, so see if you can reduce the costs of your plan today!
✅Utilize us as your “contactless” online health insurance agency. With our exclusive Health Sherpa partnership, we offer our members unparalleled access to this online enrollment platform. We never have to visit with you in-person! You can run quotes, see your plan information, see if you qualify for premium assistance, and enroll all online. And, our licensed agents are standing-by, if you need any specific assistance. Just DM us at any of our social media channels, or use our chat feature at the bottom right at our webpage. It’s a perfect setup for the current COVID-19 situation, and today’s “new normal.” We’ll social distance well with you!
Review all of your customized policy comparisons from the leading health insurers in your zip code in just minutes.

For more details, Allie explains below, in less than 2 minutes.

PolicyAdvantage.com is licensed in three states:

  • California (our home state)
  • Florida
  • Texas

If you are from Florida or Texas, you will enroll at the federal health insurance exchange (HealthCare.gov), and can do-so with us at PolicyAdvantage.com through our Health Sherpa technology. If you are in California, you will enroll at the state health insurance exchange (Covered California, CoveredCA.com), and you can also run your quotes with us through our exclusive Health Sherpa partnership.

Start putting putting this industry leading, convenient enrollment platform to work for you or your family today, by visiting the links below. You’ll enjoy reviewing your personalized quotes in just minutes. Additionally, should you need any assistance, your dedicated insurance agent’s name and phone number are listed in the upper corners of the page:

CALIFORNIA EXCHANGE ENROLLMENT PLATFORM (click to visit)

FLORIDA EXCHANGE ENROLLMENT PLATFORM (click to visit)

TEXAS EXCHANGE ENROLLMENT PLATFORM (click to visit)

As mentioned, we’re a VERY “digitally friendly” insurance agency, and can help you with everything here online and/or over the phone. We can’t wait to see you at your link above, and look forward to working with you!

Thanks for stopping by, we hope you found our information to be helpful. Check back at our blog to get further information about funding healthcare. Also, please share with your friends, clients, colleagues, and family. Here are a few of our other information outlets:

Home Page: http://www.PolicyAdvantage.com

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/PolicyAdvantage

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PolicyAdvantage

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/PolicyAdvantage

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/PolicyAdvantage

PolicyAdvantage.com: Available in Florida

**Take a copy of PolicyAdvantage.com’s Florida health insurance guide with you, and share it. Download below in .PDF format.

FLORIDA HEALTH INSURANCE GUIDE (click to download)

Needing to shop and compare your health coverage options in Florida? We make it easy. Utilize our industry-leading technology to compare the best health plans in your area, see if you qualify for premium assistance, and apply online with ease. CLICK HERE TO START SAVING MONEY ON YOUR FLORIDA HEALTH INSURANCE NOW.

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Florida: welcome aboard. PolicyAdvantage.com is happy to announce that our products and services are available across the entire state, and we look forward to working with you.

As your independent insurance agent, we represent you, our client… and help you find the exact policy that fits you best.

Our number one goal is to help individuals, families, small businesses, and large companies maximize the efficiency of their health insurance plans:

  • Improve Coverage
  • Add Flexibility by Offering a Variety of Plan Selections (HMOs, PPOs, etc.)
  • Provide the Most Current Health Insurance Financial Planning Strategies
  • Save Time
  • Save Money
  • Find Your Physician & Hospital Networks
  • Maximize Tax Incentives
  • Find Dental/Vision Plans
  • Provide Direct Access to Expert Licensed Agents
  • …And more.

Your health insurance plan is one of the most important decisions you can make, and we’re here for you every step of the way.

At PolicyAdvantage.com, we provide a broad range of products and services. We have the capacity to help just about anyone with their health coverage: individuals, families, small businesses, and large companies. Our services are fee-free (ie: premiums are the same, if you work with or without us as your agent). Your single point of contact. All in ONE place.

Products available in Florida:

  • Individual & Family Plans
  • Federal Health Insurance Exchange Plans (www.HealthCare.gov)
  • Small Group Health Insurance Plans (for employers of 1-50 employees)
  • Large Group Health Insurance Plans (for employers with 50+ employees)
  • Individual, Family, and Group Dental Plans
  • Individual, Family, and Group Vision Plans
  • Individual, Family, and Group Life Insurance Plans

At PolicyAdvantage.com, we contract with most of Florida’s best health insurance companies:

  • Cigna
  • United Healthcare
  • Oscar Health
  • Bright Health
  • …+Many others.

Additionally, we’re a HealthCare.gov certified insurance agency. We are able to help you navigate the federal health insurance exchange, where you might be eligible for premium assistance, based on your household size and gross annual income.

Lastly, PolicyAdvantage.com is a “digitally friendly” agency. Just a simple direct message away anywhere online, our clients love our custom-branded ePackets delivered straight to their email. Connect with us online today. Lets start designing and implementing a health coverage program that you, your family, or your company’s employees will love.

Thanks for stopping by, we hope you found our information to be helpful. Check back at our blog to get further information about funding healthcare. Also, please share with your friends, clients, colleagues, and family. Here are a few of our other information outlets:

Home Page: http://www.PolicyAdvantage.com

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/PolicyAdvantage

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PolicyAdvantage

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/PolicyAdvantage

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/PolicyAdvantage

Word Press: http://www.policyadvantage.wordpress.com

Unemployment Health Coverage & COVID-19

*FREE* Downloadable White Paper in .PDF Format (click link below now, to get your copy):

EmployementGapHealthCoverageWhitePaper_COVID19

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A gap in employment doesn’t have to mean a gap in health insurance coverage. Many of us are experiencing unprecedented changes in our lives, and we’d like everyone to know that PolicyAdvantage.com is providing more support than ever before online to individuals, families, and companies.

From restaurants, to schools, to construction companies, and more… many industries are having to work with reductions in hours, furloughs, wage reductions, and temporary layoffs.

During uncertain times, PolicyAdvantage.com has you covered. If you’re currently dealing with unemployment, there are options available to you regarding your health coverage. Here are the important things you should know:

  • COBRA. You may be able to continue your exact group plan for up to 18 months, but COBRA can be expensive.
  • Individual/Family Health Insurance Plans. Once you lose your group/employer sponsored health insurance plan, it opens up a “Special Enrollment” period in the individual and family plan marketplace. This special enrollment period is time sensitive (usually 60 days from loss of group coverage), and you’ll want to look into this right away.
  • Covered California Health Insurance Plans. Like individual and family plans, you can look into Covered California plans. Once you lose your employer sponsored health insurance coverage, a 60 day special enrollment will start. IMPORTANT: state and federal unemployment income DOES count towards your MAGI (modified adjusted gross income), which is used for calculating your eligibility for premium assistance. Because of this, you and your family could be eligible for assistance that could substantially reduce the cost of your plan. As mentioned, this is also time sensitive, so you’ll want to look into this as soon as possible. Policy Advantage Insurance Services is a Covered California Certified Agency, and we can help you navigate.

Utilize our online options. Our licensed agents are literally just a direct message away through our chat feature at PolicyAdvantage.com, or at any of our social media channels. We’re able to provide you with information, consultation, quotes, and applications via email in the comfort of your own home or place of business.

Thanks for stopping by, we hope you found our information to be helpful. Check back at our blog to get further information about funding healthcare. Also, please share with your friends, clients, colleagues, and family. Here are a few of our other information outlets:

Home Page: http://www.PolicyAdvantage.com

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/PolicyAdvantage

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PolicyAdvantage

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/PolicyAdvantage

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/PolicyAdvantage

Word Press: http://www.policyadvantage.wordpress.com

Health Coverage & COVID-19

The 2020 global Coronavirus pandemic is a rapidly evolving medical event that is changing daily. Here at PolicyAdvantage.com, we want to keep you up to date with the latest information regarding your health coverage:

  • State/Federal Updates
  • Health Plan/Carrier Updates
  • What to do if you can’t pay your premiums?
  • What to do if your employees had hours cut?
  • +MORE

With the onset of COVID-19 in the United States, and in the state of California, we have been receiving a lot of information from the health insurance industry.

Although none of this is intended to be interpreted as medical advice from Policy Advantage Insurance Services, we have been advised to share with our audience important information, information sources, and facts.

It’s the consensus within the health insurance industry that it is very important to stay informed about COVID-19 to help with early prevention, and to reduce the risk of transmission… all while navigating the current health insurance environment.

Additionally, Covered California has recently announced that 2020 enrollment has been extended until June 30th, 2020. It is not too late to get a health insurance plan in place. Reach-out directly to us, and we’ll help you find the right policy. Additionally, if you are an employer, groups can enroll in large and small employer health insurance plans anytime throughout the year. We can assist and help you enroll online, and/or over the phone.

We are thinking about our clients and everyone else during these unprecedented times, and hope that you, your family, and your friends stay healthy. For further assistance, or if you have questions regarding coverage, connect with us online anytime.

Visit our contact page to get assistance. We can send you info online (email: info@policyadvantage.com, or chat in lower right), over the phone (800-617-0089), or in person (schedule an appointment with us). We have also setup a specific COVID-19 page: PolicyAdvantage.com/COVID19.

Thanks for stopping by, we hope you found our information to be helpful. Check back at our blog to get further information about funding healthcare. Also, please share with your friends, clients, colleagues, and family. Here are a few of our other information outlets:

Home Page: http://www.PolicyAdvantage.com

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/PolicyAdvantage

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PolicyAdvantage

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/PolicyAdvantage

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/PolicyAdvantage

Word Press: http://www.policyadvantage.wordpress.com

Top Tips: 2020 Health Insurance Open Enrollment

Open enrollment in the individual and family plan marketplace for health plans that start on January 1st, 2020 is just around the corner. Renewal processing will start in a couple of weeks, and open enrollment for new plans will continue shortly afterwards. If you’re looking to enroll in a plan that starts on 1/1/2019, you’ll want to have your application filled-out and submitted by December 15th, 2019.

At PolicyAdvantage.com, we’ve helped hundreds of individuals and familes navigate the health insurance environment since 2012. Through that experience, we’ve come up with a list of top tips for you in 2020:

  • Have a single point of contact. Things can change significantly from year to year, and you’ll want to have a guide who knows and understands the conditions in your area. For example, there might be completely new health plans from new insurance companies being offered, your doctor and hospital networks may be expanded or change, plus more. Work with an agent who can help you efficiently navigate this each year.
  • Keep up with the regulatory environment in the state in which you reside. Regulations and access to care can change significantly from state to state. For example, as of January 1st, 2020, the state of California has significantly expanded access to health insurance subsidies through the state health insurance exchange. Many more families will have access to these subsidies to help them offset the cost of their health insurance premiums. At the same time, the state of California has completely eliminated access to short term health insurance plans. These short term plans can be much more affordable than typical individual or family health insurance plans, but they are also typically much more limited in benefits. California has decided that these short term plans are “junk plans,” and they’re no longer available throughout the entire state. These are examples of significant regulatory differences in California, when compared to other states.
  • Consider small group health insurance plans. If you are not eligible for exchange subsides to help you offset the cost of your individual health coverage, look into a small group health insurance plan if you have a small business (or even a group of partners). Small groups can be setup as VERY small groups, sometimes with just 1-2 participants. So if you have a business with you and a partner, there’s a good chance you might be able to pair-up and find more affordable overall coverage as a small group of two, rather than purchasing two separate individual policies. Small group health insurance plans are underwritten differently than individual plans, which can sometimes help keep their costs lower.
  • Understand all of your coverage level options. In the individual & family plan marketplace, there are only four different levels of coverage: 1) Bronze Plans, 2) Silver Plans, 3) Gold Plans, and 4) Platinum Plans. Within each of these plans are different benefit levels (co-payments, deductibles, access to prescription drugs, etc), and the premiums can vary significantly from one level to the other. Make sure you closely evaluate your coverage level options to see if you’re able to save money.

These are just a few of our top tips to help you navigate this year’s 2020 health insurance open enrollment. Many things can change quite substantially from year to year, and that is why it’s very important to have an independent health insurance agent who can help you navigate it all.

Connect with us at our contact page to get assistance. We can send you info online (email: info@policyadvantage.com, or chat in lower right), over the phone (800-617-0089), or in person (schedule an appointment with us).

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More Dental Plans Covering Implants

Don’t think that dental implant you need is covered by your dental plan? It’s time to think again. Unlike the past, many dental insurance plans are now covering implants for medically necessary dental implant procedures.

Dental implants can be a costly prosthetic procedure when it comes to your dental care. They’re also high-demand, and very popular among patients (in order to avoid other procedure like dentures, bridges, etc). If you’re paying cash for one, they can run upwards of $2,000 per tooth, and that’s on the low end.

We’re seeing more-and-more dental plans that are now covering dental implants. This includes policies in the individual and family marketplace (ie: non-employer coverage that you can purchase on your own, anytime). And, we anticipate the trend with this new benefit to continue.

Not every dental insurance plan covers implants, but more-and-more are. So, if you’re looking for coverage that will take care of your implant, make sure to take a good look at the options that are available.

Chances are, you can find a dental PPO that will cover up to 50% of the negotiated cost of your implant, and there are even some dental policies that have a flat co-payment for one. For example, Blue Shield of California has a dental PPO that covers implants at a fixed co-payment of $613 per tooth (click here to contact us about it, and we’ll send you personalized information).

Keep in mind that there are some limitations in most policies, and you’ll also want to plan ahead. For example, many dental plans have an “annual benefit maximum” of about $1000-$2000 per year. So depending on the cost of your implant, it may only cover approximately one, or maybe two implants per year (which is still better than none). That said, you’d still also have access to your cleanings, x-rays, and other preventive care in your policy. Additionally, there is usually a waiting period for major prosthetics (implants), which in most cases is 12 months. So, you’ll want to have your plan in place for 12 months, before your benefits will kick-in. All things considered, if you do things right, you can find yourself with some pretty good dental coverage for implants these days, instead of paying for all of it out of pocket.

Many individual dental PPO’s start at around $37/month. Contact us today, to have one of our agents put together a personalized information ePacket for you, send it right to your email, and help you get your dental implant covered. We can run quotes for you, and send you a simple online application, from the convenience of your own home. Chat with us right here online on the bottom right, or: info@PolicyAdvantage.com, phone: 1(800) 617-0089.

Thanks for stopping by, we hope you found our information to be helpful. Check back at our blog to get further information about funding healthcare. Also, please share with your friends, clients, colleagues, and family. Here are a few of our other information outlets:

Home Page: http://www.PolicyAdvantage.com

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/PolicyAdvantage

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PolicyAdvantage

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/PolicyAdvantage

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/PolicyAdvantage

Word Press: http://www.policyadvantage.wordpress.com