Health Insurance 101: What are the metal tiers?

when people go to the health insurance marketplace to purchase their health insurance they're going to see plans categorized by different metal levels and these are going to be referred to as tiers and essentially each metal level is anticipated to cover a certain percentage of that person or family's major medical expenses during the course of the year bronze is the lowest of the metal levels and that's anticipated to cover 60% silver would be seventy percent gold eighty and platinum ninety now not all companies are going to offer all metal levels but all of the metal level plans in that marketplace are going to be required to cover essential health benefits things like outpatient services prescription drugs surgical care hospital stays all plans are going to be required to provide that coverage so when someone shopping they'll need to be very honest with themselves as far as what they anticipate needing during the course of the year what they're willing to pay as with all things when you ask a company to do more for you you're likely going to pay them more to do so so you'll need to also decide how comfortable mi with this level of payment how comfortable am I taking on this additional risk with the lower cost plan but you know that you will have access to those essential benefits on any plan that you take now in addition to that there may be a opportunity for some people to take what will be called catastrophic coverage that will still provide a catastrophic plan will still provide those essential health benefits but these are going to be lower cost plans because the insured individual or families taking on quite a bit more financial risk so people really want to be sure that they're not just taking the cheapest plan to take the cheapest plan or it may cost them more money than it saves them for example if you have two different situations let's say an individual has a child who has issues with allergies requires testing regular medications that's an instance where you may be willing to pay more for a higher metal tier of coverage to make sure that your cost-sharing is lower it's taking less out of your pocket each time you fill that prescription each time you bring your child into the pediatric office for that test conversely you may be a relatively young healthy athletic individual if you're a single person you probably aren't in line for a lot of major medical needs over the course of the year so if I'm a young guy and the worst thing I've got to worry about is a sprained ankle maybe I'm going to get a sinus infection once or twice a year I'm probably going to look at more of a bronze or silver level plan to save more money on the coverage because I don't anticipate needing a lot you

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