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Learning the Terms You Need to Understand Healthcare Coverage

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When a health issue arises, the last thing you want to think about is your coverage and benefits.  Many words and terms will be thrown at you with little to no explanation.  If you ask for help, it is frequently difficult to find the “right” person and you may get multiple answers to one question. 

health insurance broker seattle

Some companies will have a health insurance broker seattle, but many others may not.  So I compiled a few key terms and what they mean to help you navigate the murky waters of health insurance.

Copayment (Copay)

A copay is what you pay upfront to the healthcare provider at the time of getting a health service.  It can range from inexpensive, 25 dollars, and up.  However, this does not mean that you won’t get a bill at the end of the appointment. 


A deductible is how much of your own money you have to pay before your health care coverage will kick in.  For example, each year your deductible can be 3,000 dollars.  You are expected to pay 3,000 dollars for services and after that the insurance will cover you 100%.

In-network/ Out- of- network providers

Each health care network will have specific doctors and hospitals that are in-network.  Think about it like they are friends, while out- of- network providers are acquaintances, but they don’t have the same deals.  You usually want to stay in -network because it will be cheaper.

Inpatient Services/ Outpatient services

Inpatient services include when you need to stay the night in the hospital and outpatient services are everything else when you do not need to sleep at the hospital.

While there are many more words you should learn, this can get you a quick start.  Remember to always advocate for yourself and ask anyone to stop and explain because at the end of the day, it is your health.