With ACA enrollment period looming, health care costs set to rise

Oct 21, 2014 | Healthcare Industry News

With the next enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act growing closer, many Americans are starting to review their coverage and considering whether a new plan may be more affordable. This can be a convoluted process, so it is best practice to allow ample time to review different offerings and your own unique health care needs. 

According to PricewaterhouseCooper's Health Research Institute, health care costs are expected to grow by 6.8 percent in 2015. US News explains that part of the increase is the result of economic improvements, which means many Americans are now seeking treatments that they postponed when the forecast was less bright. Expensive specialty drugs, increased physician employment and technology investments are also driving up costs at many facilities. 

Because of the cost increase, financial advisor Brian Frederick of Stillwater Financial Partners urges everyone to use this period to review their coverage and see if there is a more affordable option available. He especially urges those with chronic condition or those who plan on starting a family to be sure they select the right plan for their needs.

"If you don't see yourself going to a doctor for anything other than an annual checkup, you're going to need a different health plan than if you're managing chronic conditions or recovering from an accident or illness," Frederick told US News. 

Frederick also urged Americans that are selecting high deductible plans to consider a health savings account. These accounts allow for pre-tax funds to be deposited directly, and can only be used for health expenses. 

When patients select the wrong health insurance plan for their needs, care facilities can encounter issues caused by bad debt. The decision to outsource receivables management can help to alleviate the multiple issues caused by mounting bad debt, as well as provide a more manageable claims load for in-house staff.