Health plans 101

How health insurance works

A health plan helps you manage the high costs of health care. You save money on costly care (doctors, hospital stays, tests, E.R. visits) by paying an affordable monthly premium. Together, everyone’s premiums help to pay for the care needed by some.

When you need care, for a routine checkup or something more serious, health care coverage can protect your budget.  When you face a major health issue, it can safeguard your financial future.

See video: Know your health plan ExternalLink   

The articles here can help you know what you need to get the most from your health plan.

Articles about health insurance:

How health plans work

Health plan words to know

Why do I need a health plan?



How to choose a health plan

You have lots of choices in health plans. Each plan has different features: your monthly rate, your maximum out-of-pocket costs for the year, doctors and hospitals included in the plan's network, "extras" like health club discounts and more.

Get the know-how you need now

All the choices are yours. So take a look at these articles before you start shopping. They'll give you the info and insights you need to make good decisions.


Articles to help you choose a plan:

What to consider when choosing a plan

How health insurance works

7 ways to save on health care

Types of health insurance costs



Information only.  The terms of your health plan can vary.

How to save on health care costs

These days, everyone’s looking for ways to save wherever they can. There are ways to save on your health care too, and we don’t mean by not getting the care you need. Investing a few moments in understanding your health care options can help you keep your family healthier without breaking the bank.

Here you’ll learn about the options you may have, and when to use them to keep costs down. You can also find out about online resources you can use to make informed decisions.

Articles about saving on health care:

7 ways to save on health care costs Choose the right level of care How to shop for the best care Take advantage of preventive care

Health info & tools

Here you’ll find health and wellness articles to help you live life well and be smart about your health and health care choices.

Health support

Take advantage of support and services brought to you by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota:
» Talk to a doctor online -- no appointment needed

Wellness center & other resources

Be your healthiest with help from these tools and resources:
» Make the most of your doctor visits
» Calculators — BMI, target heart rate and more
» How to increase your family’s physical fitness
» More health and wellness articles

Health care planning

Tools to help you plan ahead and make smart decisions about your health care:
» Estimate your health care costs
» Write an advance health care directive  
» Learn how health care reform affects you

Safety & prevention

Be safe and practice prevention with these articles and guides:
» See prevention guidelines
» Try a risk assessment tool

Health savings accounts

A health plan with a health savings account (HSA) can be a good way to help you save on health care.

  • • You set money aside in a tax-deductible account to pay for health care services
  • • An HSA works with a high-deductible health plan
  • • It can even help you save for retirement

These articles can help you learn more about HSAs and see if one would work for you.  You can also watch a video about consumer-directed health plans and HSAs.

Articles about HSAs:

6 Benefits of HSA plans How a health savings account (HSA) works Saving for retirement with an HSA How to open an HSA