Whether you receive vision insurance from your employer or you have purchased it through an insurance company or vision benefits provider, there are many options and benefits to having additional coverage when it comes to your vision. Here at Marlow Family Eye Care, we are happy to help answer any questions you may have and provide you the basic information so that you can make the most of your vision insurance package.

Understanding Your Plan and Coverage

Insurance options can be extensive and at times confusing, so it is important to know where to go when you have questions about your coverage. If you have purchased your vision insurance through your employer, you will want to check with your Human Resources department for the proper literature that outlines your specific plan benefits and coverage. Most insurance plans are one of two types: Vision Benefits Packages or Vision Discount Plans.

Vision Benefits Packages

These packages are usually purchased in addition to employer-provided healthcare. It includes a set of benefits that relate to general eye health, maintenance, testing, and various discounts for glasses frames, corrective eyewear lenses, and even surgery. These packages operate through a network of providers who honor the benefits, similar to how many healthcare insurance plans work. In some cases, you may be able to customize your coverage based on your individual needs and preferences. Be sure to speak with your HR representative to see what your employer offers and what is the best option for you and your family.

Vision Discount Plans

Vision discount plans tend to be less flexible than vision benefits packages. As the name suggests, they are primarily made up of discounts for specific vision related services that you may require annually such as eye exams, corrective eyewear, and some surgical procedures. While these plans offer lower premiums than vision benefits packages, they do require you to pay the difference between the cost of treatment and what your plan covers, so there will be some out-of-pocket expenses. These plans operate similarly to vision benefits packages, but may be a more preferable option if you only require the basics to suit your vision needs.

What is Vision Insurance Planning?

When using your vision insurance, it is important to plan accordingly so that you can maximize your benefits. By fully understanding your coverage and when it renews, you can avoid any lapse in coverage and reduce your out-of-pocket expenses. When it is time for your next eye exam, talk with your eye care professional to ensure that you are applying your benefits in the best way possible to maximize your benefits.

Do My Benefits Expire?

The lifetime of your vision benefits are dependent upon your specific plan. Most plans expire annually (January 1st to December 31st), but the expiration date can vary. It is important to note that benefits do not “roll over,” and if you don’t use your benefits while they are active, you will lose them. If staying up-to-date with your vision care and maintenance wasn’t enough, keeping your annual appointments and check ups will help you avoid losing that hard earned money that you’ve put into your benefits package.