Well-Weight-Wisdom: Insurance, Doctors and You!

I’ve been reading a lot lately about health care and insurance and I’m concerned that people aren’t getting the most out of their plans. There are things happening that are confusing and worrisome to us all. There is a lot of talk about what is being taken away or removed from health insurance offerings, however, you do have more options than you realize. It’s scary hearing about what may or may not be covered, and the threat (or promise) of higher and higher deductibles – especially for pre-existing conditions, but, again, you do have options!

We know the system doesn’t always work properly and can be difficult to navigate.  I’m not going to get into the politics of health care or the blame game because what I am here to tell you is that you are responsible for your own health and wellness and making sure that you’re getting the proper care that you need! We all have different lifestyles. We all have different habits; We all eat differently; We all exercise differently; And… we each have a different body chemistry that can determine our overall health.

No matter what your situation is, I strongly encourage you to advocate for yourself! Insurance companies and doctors are not 100% responsible for your health care, but they can help you and work in your favor if you know how to navigate the system. It’s crucial for you to be your own advocate, ask questions, do some research and push for (get) the tests you need whether you have insurance or not!

To learn how I do this… watch and read more below…

Well-Weight-Wisdom: Insurance, Doctors and You cont’d…

I’ve been my own health advocate for a long time. This was especially important when I went through what I like to call “hormonal hell” in my early 40’s.  I went to ten different doctors, multiple specialists and had many tests done to try to find out what was going on in my body and what was causing my mystery illnesses. I worked through the system to get back to better health, even when the doctors weren’t suggesting solutions or tests to determine what was going on. I took my situation seriously and approached it head-on by knowing what my insurance covered and pushing the doctors to order the tests, but also by being willing to pay out of my own pocket when necessary.

I did a lot of research and asked my doctors to perform testing that my insurance would cover… and some that it would not. I’m not suggesting you research so much that you scare yourself, but do become informed. Visit trusted websites that know what they’re talking about. For instance, Web MD and the Mayo Clinic have valuable, mostly up to date information and, you might check out complementary or alternative health sites as well. The point is to be informed so that you can help your doctors get to the root of any health problems.  Don’t rely on your doctor 100% because you’re not their only patient and they don’t know it all!

Be sure to contact your health insurance company (or login online) to find out what your policy covers and use it! Know what tests are allowed and what types of doctor and specialist visits are permitted and how often. You should also be able to determine how often you can get blood work done and then schedule it ahead of time.  Many insurance companies cover testing at 3, 6 or 12 month intervals and some tests can even be covered every 30 days when trying to determine a pattern or monitor a health issue. Talk to your doctor about getting your complete blood work-up done every 6-12 months if you have concerns.  Push for additional testing if you feel it is necessary… especially hormone and thyroid panels… and don’t be afraid to ask for additional testing that may be out of the norm!

Asking the right questions is key to working well with your medical practitioners.  I recommend that you walk into your doctor’s office with a piece of paper which has all of your questions on it as well as information from your research. When scheduling your appointment, ask how much time you get with the doctor and try to get a minimum of a twenty minutes and hold them to that time even if they are running late. Also keep in mind that your doctor sees hundreds if not thousands of patients and cannot be expected to remember every single little detail about you. So, as your own health advocate!  Write it down, take notes and keep your own medical record file on your computer or in a file drawer and know that your doctor does not necessarily have access to notes or test results ordered by other doctors or specialists!

You may need testing not covered by your insurance so I always suggest you have a savings account dedicated to health expenses. It does not necessarily have to be a formal HSA, but it may be good to investigate that option and the rules on how they work. If you don’t want to deal with a formal health savings plan, please put some of your money into a separate savings account to use for personal health expenses. This will enable you to pay for additional blood work, alternative testing or holistic doctors you might otherwise refuse due to out of pocket costs. AND… IF YOU DO NOT HAVE INSURANCE, YOU MUST PUT MONEY AWAY FOR MEDICAL EXPENSES!

I’ve been paying for my own insurance for over ten years now and I have experienced the ups and downs, the different programs and different deductibles and insurance policies. I’ve made it work for me. If you have any questions about how I managed through it all, please contact me and set up a Personal Coaching Session. I’ll answer questions you have about planning for health savings or help you research with your insurance company what you can get done and the different alternatives that are out there. I want to create a specific plan to help you feel as good in your body as is possible and help you uncover challenges or obstacles you might have in reaching your well-weight goals. Additionally, I work with you to make sure you are getting your testing scheduled and completed as well as setting aside time to research what other options are available for your conditions.

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The following links you may be interested in as you take charge of your health and weight:
— Register for my FREE Membership group by clicking HERE
— Need help with personal challenges or overcoming obstacles? Schedule a Personal Challenge Session – click HERE
— Want to hear more about my story? Click HERE

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