Top 10 Ways to be a Savvy Health Care Consumer

No one wants to get sick. But it can happen. No one wants to waste money. But it can happen. Here are 10 things you can do to keep money in your pocket when shopping for health care.

1. Stay in the network. Using a health care professional who is part of your network will typically save you money.

2. Shop around. Use cost and quality tools to get the most from your plan. Instead of a hospital outpatient setting, procedures like colonoscopies can be performed at free-standing outpatient surgery centers and other alternatives for less money.

3. Get preventive care. Take care of yourself with checkups, immunizations and screenings that can help detect or prevent serious problems. In-network preventive care is often covered at 100 percent.

4. Do some homework first. Check the specialty of the clinic or hospital before you go to pay a visit to ensure you could give the qualified care.

5. Know where to find a convenience care clinic. If you can't get an appointment with your regular doctor, convenience care clinics inside grocery stores, pharmacies and other retail stores can provide quick and affordable care.

6. Consider an urgent care center. For non-life threatening issues, consider an urgent care center instead of an emergency room (ER). It could save you a lot of money.

7. Go generic. Generic drugs typically cost less and can be equally effective for most people.

8. Pay attention to your bills. Make sure you are charged correctly for the services you receive.

9. Try finding more in our new Chronical Disease Management Service package including pharmacy delivery service in the "Service Spotlight" section.

10. Pay attention to your mental health as well. It's important to recognize negative feelings and not to let them take over, which might cause physical issues to some extent. Please take a look at our "Healthy You" section for more info.

Health. It's not what you think.

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