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Your guide to understanding the private health insurance marketplace.
Published September 11, 2019
The word "private" is used to describe any health insurance plan that is not run by the federal or state government. Private insurance can be purchased from a variety of sources: your employer, a state or federal marketplace, or a private marketplace.
There are a wide variety of options when it comes to private health insurance plans. All private health insurance plans are designed to split the cost between you and the insurer, making medical care more affordable for you. These cost-sharing methods come in the form of deductibles, copays, and coinsurance. When shopping for a plan, look for the right balance between the monthly cost of the plan and the cost sharing methods.
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The opposite of a private insurance plan is a public insurance plan. There are a few government-run health insurance plans you may be aware of. Medicaid is a state-run insurance that helps people with low incomes pay for health care services. Medicare is a similar program for people age 65 and older. Another popular government-run program is CHIP, the Children's Health Insurance Program, which provides free or low-cost health insurance to children who otherwise are not covered by a private plan or Medicare.
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Yes, we have to include some legalese down here. Policygenius Inc. (DBA Policygenius Insurance Services in California) (“Policygenius”), a Delaware corporation, is a licensed independent insurance broker. Policygenius does not underwrite any insurance policy described on this website. The information provided on this site has been developed by Policygenius for general informational and educational purposes. We do our best to ensure that this information is up-to-date and accurate. Any insurance policy premium quotes or ranges displayed are non-binding. The final insurance policy premium for any policy is determined by the underwriting insurance company following application.
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