4 Things Your Health Insurance Doesn’t Usually Cover


Most Americans either get healthcare through their jobs, or they buy it themselves through the marketplace. It’s going to stay that way for the time being since many high-powered entities resist universal healthcare. As long as healthcare remains privatized, companies that provide it can keep making money.

Everyone needs healthcare, and if you have it, you’ll feel a lot better about moving through your life’s various phases. Even if you feel pretty healthy now, you never know when you might get sick or when an accident might occur that injures you. At that time, your healthcare will go to work, paying for all or some of the resulting costs.

However, even if you have excellent healthcare, there are some things that it rarely covers. You should be aware of what’s on that list. That way, it won’t surprise you if you try to get one of these procedures or products and you have to pay for all of it out of pocket.

Let’s run through some of the most common things your health insurance won’t cover.

Dietary Supplements

There are various dietary supplements you can buy, and many people take them. You have to be careful which ones you choose, though. FDA data during a 9-year period shows that 51% of Class 1 recalls were dietary supplements.

A Class 1 recall is basically the most serious kind. When that happens, it usually means the product is not safe, or the FDA found that it contains ingredients that the label doesn’t mention.

Even though so many people take dietary supplements, you should know that your health insurance seldom covers them. Your health insurance provider will almost always say you’re taking the supplement voluntarily, but your health or life does not depend on your doing so.

Because of this, you should carefully consider which supplements you want to purchase. If your doctor tells you that you should take fish oil, for instance, you’ll need to look at how much it costs and whether you feel that it’s worth it to pay for it. If you do not have a lot of disposable income, you may want to refrain from purchasing such supplements.

Cosmetic or Elective Procedures

There are also all kinds of either cosmetic or elective procedures that you can get. A cosmetic procedure might be a nose job if you don’t like your nose’s look or shape. Other ones might include breast augmentation surgery or getting a doctor to remove an unsightly mole.

Elective procedures include things like vasectomies. It’s an essential medical procedure, but your life or health does depend on you getting one. A doctor removing a kidney stone might be another example.

If you can’t establish that your life or health are at risk if you don’t get either a cosmetic or elective procedure, you can argue with your health insurance company about it, but you’re almost always going to have to come up with the money on your own.

Brand-New Technologies

Brand-new technologies are something else that a healthcare company is not going to want to pay for, which can frustrate people in some circumstances. For instance, maybe you have a torn muscle, and getting stem cell treatments is one option. There are other possibilities on the table for how you might deal with it, though, such as surgery or a physical therapy program.

Unless a type of procedure becomes more mainstream and the medical community wholeheartedly accepts it, the health insurance company will probably not back down. Once a procedure has been around for several years, and virtually all hospitals and doctors do it, that’s typically when you can get the healthcare provider to pay for it.

Off-Label Drugs

There are also different drugs on the market that are not FDA-approved. You often see late-night commercials advertising them. They might claim to do all kinds of things, like regrow your hair, cure erectile dysfunction, give you more energy, and so forth.

In almost all instances, your healthcare provider will not shell out money for that sort of thing, either. Unless you can get a doctor to say that this medicine or treatment is legit and you need it to live, you’ll have to pay for that kind of thing out of pocket as well.

If you’re ever unsure about any medically-related expenditure, you can ask your healthcare provider about it. These are only four of the examples, though, of products or services they will make you pay for yourself.