It's no news that quality affordable health insurance for the self-employed is an oxymoron. The good news is, it's pretty easy to compare health care plans, as I recently discovered using eHealthInsurance.
I'm shopping around because in March our monthly premiums skyrocketed from $350 to $600. True, our coverage is phenomenal--even better than when I worked at Microsoft--but $600 a month when we're both active, relatively young and perennially healthy is too high.
Since leaving Microsoft and having to forage for my own coverage, I've always opted to join organizations that offer health insurance. For years I belonged to NASE (National Association for the Self-Employed) which offers good coverage at affordable prices along with a host of other valuable membership benefits.
I dropped my NASE membership when I decided to join the Microsoft Alumni Network exclusively for former Microsoft employees. In addition to group insurance, MSA offers me a powerful networking platform as well as the same deep discount at the Microsoft Company Store that employees enjoy. I'm not a big networker / organization joiner but these among other attractive benefits factored into my decision to join and I'll likely remain a member even after dropping their health insurance plan.
If you're self-employed and looking for health insurance:
- Look into alumni organizations you're qualified to join; many offer discounted health plans
- Some labor unions, professional clubs and women's organizations offer group health insurance to their members (networking can be an added bonus)
- Check out NASE--they're an easy, affordable way to secure coverage for you, your business and employees
- Visit eHealthInsurance for easy plan comparison
- For other possible options, The National Women's Health Information Center provides a wealth of information