Being A Smart Consumer

How To Be A Smart Healthcare Consumer

Better care doesn’t mean paying more. It means making informed decisions about which providers to use, what care to receive when, and how you receive care. Make good decisions in these areas, and you’ll find the payoff is more than just money—it’s good health, too.

Here’s a checklist for getting the best deal on healthcare.

  • Use in-network providers: With all NVIDIA plans, you pay less when you use in-network providers. In addition to finding in-network doctors, this includes using in-network providers for services like lab work and tests. In-network providers vary by medical plan.

    The NVIDIA HSA, NVIDIA HSA Plus, NVIDIA PPO, and NVIDIA PPO Plus use Cigna’s Open Access Plus (OAP) Network of hospitals and physicians for in-network services. Participants in MA use the Open Access Plus—CareLink (OAPC) Network

    To find a provider in your network, go to:

  • Use cost comparison tools: The cost of services can vary greatly. An MRI may cost $200 at one place and $2,000 at another. Take a little time up front to research the cost of care before choosing a provider
  • Urgent care versus the ER: Emergency rooms generally cost three times as much as primary or urgent care services, according to the Urgent Care Association of America. That said, visit the ER if you have life-threatening symptoms. Use urgent care facilities only if you can’t wait to see your primary doctor
  • Get your preventive checkup and all recommended screenings: Preventive care is 100% covered by all NVIDIA medical plans. So take advantage of your benefit, and go to the doctor for a physical each year. Your health plan also has a list of recommended screenings by age and gender. Use that as a guide to stay on top of your health
  • Ask smart questions about medical tests: Recommended screenings are important. Before you get any other medical tests, be sure to ask your doctor these key questions to avoid spending unnecessary time or money:
    • “Do I really need the test?”
    • “What are the downsides?”
    • “What happens if I do nothing?”
    • “How much does it cost?”
    • “Is this test covered by my insurance?”

How Does The Affordable Care Act Affect Me?

The NVIDIA medical plans meet all legal requirements, and you don’t need to take any action if you’re eligible for NVIDIA benefits.

Health Care Reform 101

Health care reform addresses some important issues in the health care system that, because NVIDIA already has generous coverage, you may not have been aware of. For example:

  • Everyone can get coverage. Some Americans weren’t able to buy health insurance because of an illness. Now, all Americans can join any health plan without exclusions for pre-existing health issues
  • Everyone must get coverage. If you don’t have coverage, you pay a tax. However, as long as you stay on your NVIDIA medical plan, you won’t need to take any action

Impact At NVIDIA

Health care reform affects NVIDIA in two significant ways:

  1. More regulation equals more resources spent to comply with monitoring the law, analyzing our plans, and implementing any necessary changes.
  2. We now have higher plan costs because of new taxes that the health plans have to pay.

The health care landscape will keep changing. We believe these shifts bring new opportunities for us to provide you with more valuable benefits.

The Health Insurance Marketplace

The health insurance exchanges or marketplaces are intended for those who can’t get affordable coverage through their employers. You can shop in the marketplace and compare plans and prices. However, it’s unlikely that you’ll find a plan on the marketplace that provides better value than what NVIDIA offers.

If you aren’t eligible for NVIDIA benefits, buying coverage through the marketplace could be a great option for you. You can get started at www.healthcare.gov.