If you’re like many people, you probably haven’t maxed out your health benefits this year. They oftentimes won’t roll over, so if you don’t use them up, you could be leaving money or great preventive benefits on the table. But everyone’s situation is unique, so you’ll need to determine which strategies are best for you and your family. Here are a few tips to use your health benefits before the end of the year.

Get preventive care 

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA or Obamacare) requires insurance companies to provide quite a few free preventive care benefits. You can use these with no copayment or coinsurance, even if you haven’t met your annual deductible. They include: 

  • Screenings. Depending on your age and health status, these may include colonoscopies, mammograms, Hepatitis C tests, and diabetes checks. 
  • Vaccinations. From Covid-19 and the flu to tetanus and MMR (measles, mumps, rubella), you can get vaccines from your doctor or at an in-network pharmacy. 

Schedule your physical 

It’s easiest to remember your annual physical if you always schedule it for the end or beginning of the year. If you’re due for your next physical or EHE Health exam, schedule it now. 

Figure out the best timing for non-emergency procedures 

Many people need medical procedures that aren’t immediate emergencies but shouldn’t be put off too long. If you or someone in your family has been waiting for a procedure, take a few minutes to review your healthcare records for the year. Have you already met your annual deductible? If so, you may want to go ahead and schedule that procedure before the end of the year. If not, consider planning it for early next year. That will help you get a jump on your upcoming deductible. 

Check your perks 

Many health insurance plans offer a variety of perks that aren’t widely advertised. Maybe your insurer offers discounted gym memberships, free Zumba classes or huge savings on Lasik surgery. Carefully read through your plan documents to find out what you might be missing, and sign up for anything that makes sense for you and your family. 

Review your coverage 

The end of the year is the perfect time to review your healthcare coverage and ensure your current plan is still the best choice. Life circumstances change, and sometimes a plan that sounded perfect on paper isn’t working out as expected. If your current insurance plan is no longer right for your family, you can change plans during the Open Enrollment period. The exact dates vary depending on your state, the insurer you use, and whether you are on an ACA marketplace plan. But it generally happens around the end of the year. Contact your insurance company for details on Open Enrollment and what new plans are available to you. 

Most people aren’t taking full advantage of their health perks, but these tips can help you use your health benefits before the end of the year so you don’t miss out.