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Old 13.01.2021, 11:27
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Should I get supplementary insurance?

Hi,
I'm signing up for the basic insurance, and am wondering whether a supplementary insurance would be useful for something?

I'm in my early thirties, already have accident insurance and travel insurance.
My projected visits would be:
1. Dermatologist check ups twice a year (should be included in basic, as I have a first degree family member who had melanoma)
2. I want to try to get a Adderall/Ritalin prescription
3. STD check ups once a year

Would supplemental insurance be useful for any of that? From what I see, it's mostly good for glasses, new-age medicine, massages and such.
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Old 13.01.2021, 21:12
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Re: Should I get supplementary insurance?

I don't see the point of supplementary insurance given your list.
  • Dermatologists would be covered under most basic insurances, particularly if referred by your primary doctor.
  • Adderall/Ritalin is carefully controlled, and having a supplementary insurance doesn't give you any more likelihood of getting the medicine.
  • STD checkups can be done by your primary doctor.
All of the above subject to your annual franchise/deductible and co-pays of course.
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Old 14.01.2021, 06:09
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Re: Should I get supplementary insurance?

If you're female just something to consider :

1. Supplemental insurance will help cover Pap Smears not covered by your main insurer. This was an issue for me when I was pregnant. A Pap Smear was required as part of the initial pregnancy visit. The main insurer wouldn't cover it, even though it was listed as a necessary prenatal exam. My supplemental insurer did.

2. Pregnancy - If you plan on becoming pregnant or think you might, it might good to think about having supplemental insurance. Many supplemental insurers want you to be insured with them for 2 years before covering any costs related to pregnancy .

Things that supplemental insurance could help cover during pregnancy are lab tests, treatments like acupuncture, prenatal and pregnancy courses, massage, which doctor you can have deliver your baby ( meaning the head doctor or doctor on staff ), it can also help pay the cost of a private or semi-private room and meals for your spouse if they stay with you in hospital . I'm sure there may be other benefits, but it's all I could think of at the moment.

If you're not a female or not pregnant : The main benefit that we saw was helping pay for a nicer more private room, eye glasses, and if I remember correctly some travel insurance coverage so that we were covered overseas in case of an accident or emergency.

HTH
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Old 14.01.2021, 09:43
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Re: Should I get supplementary insurance?

We looked at changing from Concordia to Swica supplementary insurance this year as the benefits for us were better but due to age we didn't get it approved by Swica. The advantages were more alternative treatments, checkups and gym membership partially covered as well as accident and travel (depending on policy), so a basic policy might end up close to cost neutral depending on your lifestyle.
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Old 14.01.2021, 10:09
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Re: Should I get supplementary insurance?

As with all insurances, what you don't need today you may need tomorrow but then of course it will not be accessible to you.

So think through a couple of life scenarios that could happen and how you would like to be covered then and then make your decision based on what you can afford.

K
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Old 14.01.2021, 11:16
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Re: Should I get supplementary insurance?

I don't have supplementary insurance, specifically private or half-private, because I did not qualify for it when I moved here.

At first it didn't make any difference, as I was never sick, only saw the doctor once a year for routine checks. However as I grew older there have been several times when I wish I had it, as with it I would have had access to certain specialists and a different level of hospital care.

This is very much a YMMV situation. I live in an area with a small hospital, one that does not have many of the bells and whistles, and there are not many specialists practicing in the area. Having only basic insurance has at times limited my care options. If you live in a more urban area you likely have a wider choice of hospitals and specialists, urban hospitals often can recruit top younger staff more easily, so you might not need a higher level of insurance.

One option you might consider is the 'flex' addition to your basic insurance. IIRC most insurers offer something along these lines. With this package you can upgrade a hospital stay, both accommodation and seniority of attending doctor, should you ever want/need it. The additional monthly premium is not too much, and the self-pay for such an upgrade per stay, last time I looked, was only 4-5K.

If you browse the forum you'll find several threads on this topic, and you'll find posters whose experiences have been the opposite of mine, who have had no trouble accessing top level care with only basic insurance. As said, YMMV.

You might not need/want 'better' insurance now... but down the road, when you no longer qualify, you might wish you had it. It's a roll of the dice.
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