[eli5]What is a deductible in health insurance?

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I’m currently shopping for health insurance and have no idea what a deductible means. I looked it up several times and I just have no idea what it means at all.

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Anonymous 0 Comments

It’s money you still have to pay out of pocket annually before the insurance really kicks in. So if you have a $2000 deductible, you’d need to spend $2000 in prescriptions, doctors visits, tests, etc. before insurance covers all/most of your care. That’s on top of your premiums. But before you hit your deductible, there are certain things that are covered like an annual physical and immunizations. And you may get a reduced rate for care prior to deductible kicking in. So you might see a doctor visit billed at $400 because you were sick, but the insurance negotiated rate is $280. So that’s what you’d owe, not the $400. But say you needed an MRI that ran $2000, then anything after that would be covered by your rate of coverage after your deductible, typically something between 80% and 100%. If 100%, then your out of pocket max and deductible are the same, otherwise you might have something like a $4000 out of pocket max meaning the insurance pays 80% and you pay 20% on care until you’ve paid $4000 out of pocket and then they’d pay 100%. So you blow out a knee playing basketball, and hit your $2000 deductible on a doctor visit and MRI, surgery is $50k but you pay $2000 toward that while your insurance company pays the balance.

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