The Artists' Guide to Health Insurance More Deals & Steals

It pays to stay in-network. Make sure your medical providers participate in your plan’s network. Even if your plan has out-of-network benefits, the difference in price is still pretty big.

Take advantage of discounts. It may not always be easy to dig up info on discounts that are included with your plan, but it could be well worth the hassle (like sending in that rebate for your brand new computer or phone). Plans may offer discounts on acupuncture, massage therapy, vitamins, smoking cessation programs, gym/health club memberships and more.

Chances are you’re already shelling out money for some of this stuff. Why pay full price? 10-25% here or there seems small, but altogether, that can add up to $600-$1000 a year you’re spending unnecessarily. Hmmm….what can you do with that extra grand in your pocket?

Like “Buy 2 get 1 Free”? Who doesn’t, right? That’s exactly the kind of deal you get by using mail order pharmacies.

This is a benefit that many people frequently pass up (and along with it, extra savings.) When you use mail order for ongoing prescriptions, your copays can be reduced by as much as 50%. Not only that, you’re also getting more for your money (as much as a 90-day supply vs. the standard 30-day supply.) Would you rather pay the full copay for a 30-day supply or half price for a 90-day supply? And shipping is often free, so you won’t have to make any more trips to the pharmacy.

Go generic. Most brand name drugs have generic equivalents. Generic prescriptions are required to match the quality and effectiveness brand name ones, as per the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA.)

It’s always best to talk to your doctor beforehand about any concerns to see if a generic drug equivalent of a brand is really right for you. The point we’re trying to make is that you have nothing to lose in asking doctor about generic prescriptions. So, speak up!

This is great and is totally saving me money, but I was uninsured for a long time and racked up a lot of medical debt. What should I do now? You have options! Getting Stuck with the Bill

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