The new year could bring higher health insurance deductibles for patients checking into the doctor's office or emergency room. NBC 7's Consumer Bob explains why you could be shelling out more for your healthcare plan in 2014.
The New Year brings resolutions-- and brand new health insurance deductibles.
Insurance broker Erick Lundy says get ready to pay more.
"Five years ago, it was very common to see a $250, $500 deductible," Lundy said. "Today, you're seeing it anywhere from $1,000 all the way up to $5,000 deductible."
Lundy says higher health care costs are to blame, along with health insurance changes. If you get medical care now, you often pay out-of-pocket expenses until you reach your deductible. But that deductible only lasts for a year then it starts over again on Jan. 1. And many people watch that deductible go up every year.
Luanne McCraney says she's getting ready to pay more.
"I think it's going up by about 30 percent," McCraney said.
Yaphet Yokley has watched his premiums and deductibles "increase dramatically over the last four or five years."
But you should expect more than just a higher deductible. You should also expect pressure to pay your bill when you receive service.
"As the deductibles continue to rise, providers are seeing that they are not being paid," Lundy said. "So they're now starting to bill up front."
That means you might be asked to pay before the medical visit or before you leave the hospital.