They always say “health is wealth.” So if you are a wise handler of fortune, you should be able to make the most out of every asset. Here, we will discuss how to make the most out of one of the valuables a person has that he or she tends to overlook — prepaid health cards.

A prepaid health card is somehow similar to comprehensive health insurance. However, the former gives you the freedom to choose and pay for a specific coverage that you deem important. This makes prepaid health cards much cheaper than comprehensive health insurance. 

Because comprehensive health insurance is usually provided for by a company to its employees, prepaid health cards are recommended to freelancers, project-based employees, and people with existing health insurance who need additional coverage.

READ: Best Health Insurance For Freelancers in the Philippines

Depending on your chosen package, prepaid health cards cover hospitalization, consultations, emergency care, preventive health care, and dental services. 

Prepaid health card owners often let theirs safely tucked in their wallets so it is easy to find in case of an emergency. But our mothers always remind us “prevention is better than cure.” So we have listed ways for you to make the most out of your health card aside from using it only in the emergency room.

1. Know your health status

A quick check on your lifestyle will give you an idea of what problems you might encounter later on healthwise. 

For example, if you read a ton of books or you find yourself usually engrossed in your screen, there is a possibility that you will be experiencing eye discomfort. A visit to an ophthalmologist, therefore, might be necessary. 

If you are into extreme sports like skateboarding, your foresight will tell you that you might soon be landing onto an orthopedic clinic. That is a bit harsh but it is better than not being able to think on your feet when it happens. 

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If you are prone to allergies or putting a premium on your skin, a regular visit to a dermatologist will smooth things out for you. 

Knowing all of these aspects will help you decide on availing a prepaid health card that fits you and knows your needs. You will be able to get more bang for your buck because it will spare you from picking a package that you will not be needing. When you are prepared, you have that peace of mind that there’s no need for you to touch your savings account or emergency fund.

READ: 5 Lifelines To Use During The Coronavirus Crisis

2. Check its features 

Do not just pick a prepaid health card because it is cheap. If you really want to invest in your future by making sure your health is well taken care of, check the inclusions. 

Some health cards include in its coverage your pre-existing conditions in emergency room care benefits. It is also vital for you to know what hospitals are accredited by these health insurance companies. Make sure there are two to three options in your area. If your hospital of choice is not covered by prepaid health cards, maybe choose one that allows for reimbursements. That way, you will be able to get your money back after your hospitalization. 

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Prepaid health cards also indicate the details of emergency room service. For example, in an on-year coverage, the insurance company will cover your bills in the emergency room for one time only in an accredited hospital. 

If you are a woman who is very particular with your health, there are prepaid health cards the cover procedures such as Pap smear, breast ultrasound, and transvaginal ultrasound. 

3. Go for a trip to the dentist

A lot of oral health conditions are preventable by observation of proper oral hygiene and a regular dentist consultation.

You may not be aware but even some of the cheapest prepaid health cards cover your dental health. Some provide unlimited dental consultations and other procedures. Others are offered at discounted rates. Here are dental services you might be interested in availing: annual dental examination, annual prophylaxis, dental health education, dental nutrition counseling, desensitization of hypersensitive teeth, diagnosis of oral disease, first aid treatment, gum treatment for lesions, wounds, and burns only, orthodontic consultation, panoramic X-ray, panoramic X-ray, preparation of dental certificates, relief for acute dental pain and re-cementation of loose crowns.

4. Avail an Annual Physical Exam

An Annual Physical Exam (APE) allows medical professionals to identify signs and symptoms that could be indications or risk factors of a disease. It is a routine exam for early detection of illnesses even when a patient is asymptomatic (showing no symptoms).

Common procedures included in an APE include urinalysis, stool sample analysis, and blood chemistry. They will also check your vitals such as blood pressure and heart rate. From all these, they can determine red flags in your cholesterol level and sugar level. Your profile will be indicative of possible risks of heart disease and kidney problems.

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5. Check your PhilHealth sickness benefits

The National Health Insurance Act of 1995 created PhilHealth to provide health insurance coverage to Filipinos. The agency should make sure that health care services can be afforded by every Filipino citizen. 

Your prepaid health card should complement your existing PhilHealth membership. There is a long list of benefits, a member can claim using his or her PhilHealth membership. You might want to check this first before you decide on a prepaid health card. By doing so, you will be able to know how much will be shouldered by PhilHealth and what coverage should you avail in a prepaid health card. 

6. Avail a telemedicine consultation

Consultation via phone or online is the new normal. It has been recommended by the Department of Health to curb the spread of coronavirus. But even before this situation, health insurance companies have already provided their members with a free online consultation to clients the trouble of going to the hospital.

READ: Best Health Insurance Plans for Senior Citizens in the Philippines

This is available 24/7. So if it is not an emergency situation or you are not sure if it is, you might want to check first with a doctor who is readily available to answer your queries. This is much more convenient because it saves you your supposed fare, travel time, and waiting time. 

Aside from calling their hotline, there are mobile applications you can download such as MyPocketDoctor to be able to talk to a medical professional. The price for a consultation is set at Php450. Clients may pay this using their credit cards. Others, such as Medicard health insurance members, have the privilege of availing the service for free. 

There is comfort in knowing that you have chosen the best prepaid health card to take care of you and your family. Keep in mind that before venturing into other businesses, your money is best invested in yourself.

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Diana Fernandez

Diana Fernandez

A journalist by trade, previously a writing coach to budding journalists in the Philippines and a business writer in the Middle East, Diana is passionate about providing relevant, engaging, and informative content to help Filipinos choose the right financial product.

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