Your Basic 3 Step Guide to Health Insurance

Your Basic 3 Step Guide to Health Insurance
Getting health insurance will help you get the health care you and/or your family need, when you need it.


Do I really need health insurance?

Yes. Even if you are young and healthy, having health insurance gives you access to important health care services like regular checkups, counseling and screenings that will help you stay healthy and prevent health problems down the line. Health insurance also makes it possible for you to get help paying for the health care that you need. If something were to happen to you and you didn’t have health insurance, you could get into a lot of debt over medical bills that you would have to pay for on your own.


3 Steps to Your Best Health Plan

  1. Know what you need. It’s important that you get covered for doctor visits, lab tests, emergency care, surgery and hospital visits. Also keep in mind any other needs you may have. Do you just need regular checkups, shots and exams? Are you pregnant and in need of prenatal care? Do you have a health condition that needs special care like asthma, diabetes, a mental illness or disability? Do you take any medications? Be sure that your health insurance plan covers services and/or prescription drugs that you will need too.
  2. Get help choosing a health insurance plan that’s best for you. Does the plan meet you and/or your family’s needs? Does the plan give you the freedom to choose the kind of care and doctors you want? Will you have to pay out-of-pocket for health visits or other services? Can you afford it? There are health plans for everyone, every need and budget. For help choosing the best plan, visit your local health center or hospital. You can also visit or call (800) – 318 – 2596. If you live in New York, call (855) – 355 – 5777.
  3. Get the most out of your health insurance. Always carry your health insurance card with you and take advantage of services offered by your health insurance plan like health screenings, classes, nutrition/diet help and discounts. It’s best to see doctors or go to health centers that take your health insurance so that you don’t end up paying more for health care services. It helps to call and ask if they take your coverage before making an appointment.


More Help…

✧ Guides: (get answers to your health insurance questions)

Support Groups:

  • Medicaid (helps low-income families, qualified pregnant women and children and those who need more help paying for health care)
  • Children’s Health Insurance Program/CHIP (helps children up to age 19 who don’t have insurance)
  • Medicare (helps people with disabilities or those who are age 65 and older)

Talk to your doctor or health care provider for more information. 

If you don’t have a doctor or insurance, you can get help at a health center near you.


cell phone

Call 2-1-1 for 24/7 help finding health centers, programs, services and all kinds of help near you.

Call (800) – 318 – 2596 for health insurance answers and help choosing the best health care plan for you. 

Call (855) – 355 – 5777 for New York state health plan marketplace and help choosing the best health care plan for you.

Call (800) – 273 – TALK (8255) for crisis, emotional and mental health support anytime.


Page last reviewed: August 14, 2017
Page last updated: August 14, 2017







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