Individual vision insurance is a specific insurance that is tailored to care for the eyes. It provides financial assistance to pay for routine eye exams, glasses and contact lenses. It’s a great policy for those with poor eyesight who spend hundreds of dollars a month on eye care.
You can take out group insurance or individual insurance. Group Policy can be obtained through your company or another organization you work for. You can also obtain it through a government program such as Medicaid. Please refer to your company policy to learn more about it.
If you’re looking to buy an individual policy (perhaps because you’re self-employed or your company doesn’t offer individual vision insurance plans), you’ll be happy to know that most insurers sell individual policies for individuals.
Vision insurance is usually a value-added benefit in addition to a regular policy. It is available with both HMO (Heath Maintenance Organization) and PPO (Preferred Provider Organization) plans, and is contracted through a managed eye care network that provides eye care services.
As you may already know, in an HMO plan, you are required to care for a select group of doctors, hospitals, and health care providers. It is a lot cheaper than PPO, but also a lot less flexible. With additional vision insurance based on the HMO scheme, you limit your treatment options to a select group of healthcare providers.
The PPO scheme is a lot more flexible with fewer restrictions. Under this scheme, healthcare providers (doctors, hospitals, etc.) are contracted by the insurance company and receive a fixed fee for their work. The deductible in PPO schemes is a lot higher (about 20% of the costs), but this is offset by the extra freedom.
It is of course much more beneficial to purchase facial insurance under the PPO scheme, but the cost of such a policy can be quite limiting. Your policy usually covers the whole spectrum of eye care, such as routine eye exams by an ophthalmologist, eye exams by an optometrist, eye surgeon, glasses, frames and lenses etc. The only difference is that with a PPO scheme, you are free to choose your providers , while under the HMO scheme you have to join the doctor or eyewear shop affiliated under the scheme.
Vision insurance cannot replace a regular policy. There is no financial compensation in case of injury or damage to the eye. It only helps you pay for eye care and glasses, and nothing else.
Typically, a policy allows for free treatment and checkups in exchange for a monthly or annual fee added to your current insurance plan. Some plans may require you to pay a “deductible” — a fixed dollar amount that must be paid to the eye care provider.
Of course, individual vision insurance can be custom designed to meet your needs.