Health Insurance for Seniors: How to Plan for Retirement in Canada

Posted on December 27, 2018

Are you close to retiring?

Canadian health insurance is one of the best there is today. It's cheaper than other western alternatives. It also guarantees you access to a medical center when you need it, and it covers a wide range of health issues.

With age deteriorating the body's immune system, health insurance for seniors is crucial if they want to get the medical care they'll need. However, the problem is that most people are not sure how to start planning for their retirement.

Read our guide below to find out how you can start planning today. There are many things to cover. We will help you avoid rookie blunders like spending too much for insurance.

1. Choose Which Type of Health Insurance You Need

The first thing you should consider is the type of plan you need for you and your family. Health insurance for retirees often come in 4 different types.

Health Maintenance Organization Plans

The HMO type of health plan offers lower costs and provides you with excellent medical care. You will have a primary doctor to stay on top of your issues. The doctor will also be in charge of ordering tests for you.

With this plan, you will not need to do much as they will take care of most of what needs taking care of. The only downside of the plan is that you need to be within the network for you to get the benefits. This means you should stay close to your chosen hospital or any of its subsidiaries to get what you paid for.

You also need a referral to get an HMO plan. So you will need to find someone to refer you to a specialist to be able to get their help.

Preferred Provider Organization

The PPO plan provides the best health coverage for Canada's seniors if they plan on traveling a lot. In fact, it's the most popular type of health plan today. This is because it offers the most freedom out of the 4 health plans.

PPO plans allow the beneficiary to use their services even outside their network. That said, it's much less expensive if you use it within your network coverage.

You also don't need referrals for procedures or specialists in this plan.

Exclusive Provider Organization

The EPO plan is much like the HMO plan. The only difference is that there is no need to get a referral when you're in need of special procedures.

The rates of an EPO plan are also much lower than HMO and PPO. So, if you're tight on funds, this is a great plan to take into consideration.

The only drawback to an EPO network is that you cannot get any benefits when you're outside the network. So it's best for those who plan on settling down somewhere and not traveling much.

Point of Service

The POS plan is like a double-edged sword, you get some benefits but at a price. It is, in essence, a combination of an HMO plan and the PPO plan.

With a POS plan, you can get the lowered rates that the HMO offers. Like the HMO plan, you also need a referral to get special treatment should you need it.

You get cheaper rates when you're within your network, like the PPO plan.

However, things become different here when you want to go out of network. You will need a special referral to be able to leave the network, even for only a temporary time.

2. Look at the Benefits of a Health Care Plan

After choosing the type of health insurance plan you need, the next thing you should take note of is the benefits of a plan. Find out of it covers your basic necessities and then some.

Some health plans cover a wider array of benefits than others. However, you should consider if what they cover is something you see yourself needing. The most common things health plans offer to allure potential clients is physical therapy and mental care, but others even offer spiritual cleansing.

You should first look at your family's history of illness before deciding on which to choose based on their benefits. If you someone before you had an issue with mental health like dementia or Alzheimer's, then it's best you opt for what they offer. Otherwise, you should look at other plans that cover what you need.

That said, you should consider how many beneficiaries the plan covers. If you have a partner, you should also take into consideration their family's history of illness. Your decision may change with their input.

If nothing changes even with your partner's history taken into consideration, then you should stick to the basic necessities like emergency services, dental fees, and medical equipment. After all, most Canadians only opt for extended health care because it covers nothing more than their needs.

3. Compare Health Insurance Companies

Being able to choose the best health insurance company to suit your needs saves you a lot of trouble in your future as a retiree. There are a few things you should take into consideration when choosing a company.

You should first look into the costs of the plans they offer. Often, they will lay out what they cover and what it costs. You're allowed to take a copy of the plans for comparison.

Take your time in this step, as there are often many things listed down on their coverage. You can use the copies you have to narrow down your choices to the bare essentials. Then branch out to some other luxuries you would like to have.

You should then look into their network coverage. You will want a company that has a large area coverage. This will allow you to make the most of your health insurance plan.

You can look into the state's marketplace to find companies that cover health care for seniors, but you should remember to be careful in looking here because some of these choices may be newer than most, leading to unprofessional health care options.

Get Started on Planning the Best Health Insurance for Seniors Today

Planning your health insurance during retirement can be stressful. Use our guide to plan the best health insurance for seniors to make it easier now!

Looking for low insurance rates? Contact us here and we will provide you assistance in the matter!

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