Health insurance is important; especially for all members of the family and you want to ensure that they have the best quality healthcare options available so that they can stay healthy for a long time. Most family health insurance policies begin with a parent and then other family members are added on to his or her policy.

What you Need to Know about Family Health Insurance
There are several basic family health insurance plans; however, before making a decision on one, it is important to find out the costs of the plan and what kind of coverage your family needs. For instance, you may want a comprehensive family insurance plan; a plan that will cover doctor visits, prescription drugs and blood tests and this may be more applicable to you, especially if your family is large.

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Several Aspects affect a Family Health Insurance Plan
There are many aspects that affect the type, availability and cost of a family health insurance plan such as some insurance plans are not likely to accept family members who have a pre-existing health condition. If someone in your family has a pre-existing health concern, you will be able to get the family insurance plan but the cost will be more. Another thing that could happen is that the person who has a health condition will not be accepted or in another case the whole family will be denied the health insurance. In some cases, when other health insurance companies find out about a family being rejected from a family health insurance plan, others may do the same and your premiums could also increase.

What is an HMO and would this Work for your Family?
One of the most effective and least expensive family health insurance options is an HMO, Health Maintenance Organization. This kind of family health insurance has a network of providers which you have to use and that includes specialists, hospitals and doctors. In addition, you will have to see your family doctor when you need non-emergency referrals to a specialist. This kind of family insurance asks you to be flexible with the plan and in return, you are given convenience and savings on costs.

What about PPO Plans?
Then, there are Preferred Provider Organizations –PPO Plans. This kind of plan is similar to HMOs, but they offer more flexibility to the family. With this family insurance plan you and your family are allowed to see a specialist without getting a referring from your primary care physician. In this case, you don’t need to choose a family physician. Instead, you can choose from a wide network of health care physicians and you are able to choose one from outside of the PPO network but at a higher cost. This is a good plan for many; however, co-payments and a deductible are higher.

Point of Service Plans (POS)
This kind of family insurance plan looks a lot like a PPO and an HMO. With this plan you have to select and receive referrals from a primary care physician but you can also be referred to a specialist, even though they are not in the POS network. This means that this plan is more affordable for most but may be inconvenient at times.

Some benefits that come with family health insurance are:

  • Less expensive coverage for the whole family
  • Having a variety of preventative health care options for the family
  • Having a lower deductible for the family
  • Some risks that come with a family health insurance plan are:
  • Costs may be higher in certain areas of the US
  • Denial of coverage is someone in the family has a preexisting condition
  • Older family members may have to pay more for healthcare coverage

This article was written and submitted by Thomas Bell on behalf of Siddhartha Rahut from in which he writes article about family health insurance. You may visit the site for more information.