To protect yourself and your loved ones, health insurance is one of the most important things that you would want to invest in. While you don’t anticipate the idea of you or your family getting sick, some things can take a toll on one’s health—and when that time comes, it is best to face your illness well-prepared.
With a health insurance plan, some, if not all, of your medical costs may be taken off your shoulders, which is a huge help, considering the whopping amount medical bills can reach. With a health plan, you can go for checkups, vaccinations, and screenings depending on how much you’re paying for your premium and the kind of coverage your policy has.
Whether the individual is an adult or a child, a woman or a man, these are some common preventive services that they can avail themselves of with their health plan.
If you have signed up for a health plan, you may be eligible for a yearly wellness visit, which is quite similar to a physical exam. During this preventive exam, your health-care provider will record and assess both your medical and family history. You may also have to disclose any health condition or current prescriptions you’re taking.
To obtain a baseline for your care, your vital signs will be checked, such as your blood pressure, pulse, and respiration rate. Your blood oxygen saturation, which determines how well-oxygenated your blood is, will also be obtained through a finger pulse oximeter.
These wellness visits should determine your general health and identify whether you need any further testing. After your consultation, your doctor may give you a list of screenings and other preventive-care services that you may need to undergo in the future.
Both adults and children are covered by their health plans when it comes to routine immunizations, which are vital in preventing a wide range of illnesses and disability, such as diphtheria, measles, mumps, rubella, whooping cough, hepatitis B, pneumonia, tetanus, polio, rotavirus, and even cervical cancer. In fact, about 1.5 million deaths can be avoided worldwide if global vaccination coverage is significantly improved.
You may also avail of seasonal flu vaccines every year to prevent yourself from getting sick with the flu and to reduce your risk of complications and hospitalizations that the flu can cause.
High Blood Pressure and Cholesterol Screenings
You may be diagnosed with hypertension when your readings exceed the normal levels of 120/80 mmHg, which can be attributed to several risk factors, such as genetics, age, sex, and ethnicity.
However, it may also be caused by modifiable factors such as unhealthy lifestyle habits. With a health plan, you can get your blood pressure levels checked at least once a year, regardless of whether you are at high risk or not. This also goes for cholesterol screenings, which are vital in the prevention of heart attack, heart disease, or stroke.
Breast Exams and Mammograms
Private health plans usually cover additional preventive services for women, which include well-woman visits, FDA-approved contraceptives, breastfeeding support, STIs and HIV screening and counseling, domestic-violence screening, and breast exams and mammograms. Breast exams and related tests are an important part of routine physical checkups, as they can significantly protect you from breast cancer or increase your chances of survival from such disease.
During a clinical breast exam, your doctor or your nurse will ask you relevant and detailed questions about your health history before they perform a thorough breast assessment. During the test, your breasts will be checked for lumps or other abnormal changes.
Meanwhile, a mammography detects abnormal growths in your breasts with the help of special X-ray images. This is helpful in detecting lumps that are too small to be felt during a breast exam.
Alcohol-Misuse Screening and Counseling
An alcohol screening test is done to determine whether an individual abuses alcohol or has a condition called alcohol use disorder. This screening involves a process, and the longer you are tested after the initial diagnosis, the better an alcohol use disorder is categorized. Then, you may be referred to a counselor to help you overcome this condition.
Using your health plan, your employers may request an alcohol-misuse screening or cannabis drug tests as part of their annual employee health exam or pre-employment requirements. This is because of the negative effects that being intoxicated or being under the influence of such substances can bring to the workplace, which includes low productivity, poor work ethics, and accidents caused by carelessness or the lack of concentration.
Better to Be Prepared
Getting a health plan does not just serve as health protection. It also provides financial protection to you and your family. With the rising costs of health care today, a health plan can greatly help buffer such expenses when the need arises.