Piedmont Health Exchange
Health Insurance for All
For individuals (65 and older) and others with certain disabilities, Medicare may be your best option. We offer Medicare Supplements, Medicare Advantage plans, and Medicare Prescription drug plans. Here is a brief description of the terms you will hear.
Medicare Supplements, also known as Medigap, Med Sup, or even Supplement, cover the 20% of expenses not covered by Medicare Part B (medical expenses). There are 10 different plans to choose from.
Medicare Part A covers hospital expenses.
Medicare Advantage (MA) plans are also known as Part C of Medicare. These plans must offer all of the benefits that are covered under Parts A and B of Medicare. Most of these plans include a Prescription drug plan, which is Part D of Medicare. MA's are most commonly HMO or PPO.
There is an Annual Enrollment Period, which runs from October 15 - December 7. This enrollment period is separate from the Open Enrollment Period when a person turns 65, or is first eligible for Medicare.
Please note that we are not an agency of the government, nor is this site approved by the government. All plans are offered by private insurance companies.
You've probably heard the terms, exchange or marketplace. It is simply a reference to a website where you can get information or enroll in an ObamaCare plan. There are private exchanges and the federal exchange. This is a private exchange that is connected to the government site. Information entered into this site is secure. If you have any questions, please feel free to use the contact us tab, or call us at the number provided. We look forward to helping you solve your health insurance needs.
Other Health Insurance
Includes accident, bridge, cancer, critical illness, dental, disability, hospital/surgical or limited medical, long-term care, short-term medical, and vision. Depending on the ObamaCare cost, these plans may be suitable to fill in the gaps in coverage; deductibles, coinsurance, and non-covered expenses. For example, while cancer treatment is covered by the major medical plan, it may be advantageous to be treated at a specialty center. Travel, lodging, and meals are not covered expenses under major medical plans. If you are searching for ObamaCare (Affordable Care Act health insurance plans) in Columbia or the rest of South Carolina, please contact us.
Life insurance and Annuities
Various types are available, including Final Expense, Joint, Juvenille, Single Premium, Term, Universal, and Whole. Some of the newer plans include combination life & long-term care, or life & critical illness.
I'm often asked as to which type of life insurance is the best. My recommendation is to buy some of each: since Term life is so inexpensive, most people use a Term plan to cover the majority of the death benefit, and, buy some Whole life to supplement it. Why? Death benefits are paid on a very small percentage of term life policies because most people outlive the term, or drop it before the end of the term. Once the Term Life plan has terminated, then what do you do? If you had purchased a Whole Life policy at the same time, it could be paid up by the end of the term. If a good plan was selected, both the Death Benefit and Cash Value will continue to grow.
Here are some other considerations. Term insurance is like renting, whereas Universal and Whole life are like owning. That means the Term Life plan will expire after the term is up. While Term insurance is the least expensive, it is also the least flexible. What does that mean? If you miss one payment, the Term policy can be terminated. With Universal or Whole life, the premium can be paid from the cash value. (Term plans do not build cash value.)
We also offer fixed, indexed, and immediate annuities. If you are retiring and have a 401(k) plan, or are retired and have an IRA, you may want to consider an annuity for some of that nest egg. Why? Unlike the stock market, the principle in the annuity is guaranteed by the insurance company.
ObamaCare or ACA
(Affordable Care Act)
Known in the industry as major medical, these plans are the cornerstone of your health coverage.
Plans are available in 4 different levels; Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze. The higher the level of 'metal', the higher the premium, but the lower the out of pocket costs.
All plans must cover the same ten Essential Health Benefits; the question is, what do you pay vs what does the insurance pay.
There are two costs to health insurance; owning it and using it. The cost to own it is the premium. The cost to use it are the deductibles, co-pays, and coinsurance.
Subsidies, also known as Advanced Premium Tax Credits, or APTC, are available based on household income and the number of people on the tax return. The amount of subsidy is based on household income and household size relative to the Federal Poverty Level, or FPL.
For individuals and families with income between 100 - 250% of the FPL, there is an additional benefit known as Cost Share Reduction, or CSR. It reduces deductibles, co-pays, and other out of pocket costs, making the coverage and benefits extremely attractive to those with lower incomes.
The obamacare cost is determined by house-hold income, the number of people on the tax return, county of residence, and tobacco use.