How to Talk to Loved Ones about Insurance

For those we care about, it can be difficult to confront them about more serious topics, like health insurance. Look out for your friends and family to make sure they have health insurance this year.

As the period for open enrollment begins soon, make sure you have a chance to check in with your loved ones. If they do not currently have health insurance, you may want to talk to them about why it’s important. If you don’t know where to get started with a conversation like this, here are three tips on where to begin:

How to talk to them

Health care is a very personal topic, so you want to make sure you approach them with their best interests in mind. Here are some tips for having the conversation with them:

  • Have this type of conversation one-on-one, which is less intimidating
  • Make sure you find a comfortable place to talk, without distractions
  • Approach the topic slowly, gauging their willingness to talk
  • Talk about the importance of insurance, but make sure you are not using blaming language

If your friend or family member is receptive, you can point them to resources that offer information about the various types of insurance plans being offered.

What to say

Here are three conversations starters to help guide you:

  • Remind them about the financial benefit. People who are uninsured and get seriously ill or injured often face unexpected medical bills that could wipe out a family’s savings.
  • Share with them about financial assistance. If your friend or family member is worried about health insurance costs fitting into their budget, let them know that lower-cost options, such as HealthCare.gov, which offers tax credit subsidies, or Medicaid are available. The Pennsylvania Insurance Department gives an overview of options.
  • Tell them about the benefits of preventative care. Having insurance is the key to getting preventative care, like regular doctor’s visits, to help catch and treat illness and disease sooner than when it becomes a big problem.

Whatever reasons your friend or family member gives for not being insured, assure them that you have their best interest at heart. Staying covered, in case something bad happens, is really important.