Top 5 Factors to Consider When Selecting Health Insurance Plans

Navigating through the healthcare system requires time and an understanding of what each policy contains. If you’re choosing from an employer-issued benefits plan, your options are limited. For individuals utilizing the Affordable Healthcare options, the availability of plans is more extensive.

Regardless of which route you are taking, selecting health insurance plans requires a clear understanding of what you need vs. what’s available.

Are you in the market for health insurance? Keep reading to learn the top five factors to consider when comparing insurance costs and buying health insurance.

1. Selecting Health Insurance Plans to Fit Your Needs

It’s easy to select the health insurance plan that is most cost-effective for your budget. This can become a costly mistake for someone with a pre-existing health condition.

When looking for health coverage, you must consider all pre-existing health conditions you and your family member have received a diagnosis by a medical professional.

You’ll want to compare your annual medical expenses and out-of-pocket cost using multiple plans. 

2. Consider Annual Deductibles

Today, more health insurance providers are offering high deductible policies to reduce costs for employers and employees. Although you’ll spend less on monthly premiums, you’re going to spend more out-of-pocket if you have medical expenses.

Deductibles are the amount of money the insured will need to pay for medical services such as blood work, tests, and emergency room visits.  Some plan deductibles for the least expensive plans can reach $5000 or more annually. 

If you have a high deductible plan in Canada, be sure to replace health card coverage when you relocate.

3. Do You Have Pre-existing Conditions?

A pre-existing condition used to play a big role when buying health insurance. It was important to understand the insurance terms and conditions to ensure your prescriptions and treatments were covered. 

Under the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies can no longer deny someone coverage for pre-existing conditions. Companies also cannot charge more if someone has a prior diagnosis.  

4. What are the Co-Payments and Coinsurance Costs?

Every insurance plan has some form of co-payment and co-insurance structure. Co-pays are the amount you pay to the doctor or healthcare provider at the time of service. For example, an office visit to your primary care physician may cost $20 for each visit.

Coinsurance is your portion of healthcare cost, or the amount not covered by the insurance provider. 

5. Does it Have Good Prescription Coverage?

Prescription costs are rising, so you want a plan that has good coverage. This is crucial for those with ongoing medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and cancer. 

Look into mail order prescription fulfillment to cut costs.  

Select a Policy Best for You and Your Family

It’s easy to select the least expensive policy when selecting health insurance plans. In addition to the tips above, consider future health expenses such as having a baby. A change in medical expenses can leave a massive dent in your finances. Is your overall health important to you? Continue to browse our health section for more valuable tips and the latest trends.

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The Complete and Only Medical Practice Checklist You’ll Ever Need

It can be very intimidating to start a new medical practice. The current state of the health care industry seems to be constantly fluctuating based on new laws and rules. Private and independent practices also face a lot of competition from larger medical organizations. 

With all this going on, it can be scary to know where to start. Luckily for you, we have come up with a medical practice checklist to help you get started. So keep on reading and we will take you through everything that you will want to know!

Prepare the Practice

The first step to starting your new medical practice is going to be choosing which kind of medical practice you want to run. You’ll probably want to choose between traditional, concierge, and direct primary care. 

Get Malpractice Insurance

A malpractice lawsuit could end up being detrimental to your business. This is why it is so important that you acquire malpractice insurance. 

When you are looking around for medical liability insurance, you should ask the insurance providers if they also offer personal life insurance, health insurance, and corporate insurance coverage. 

You also want to make sure that your business is following proper HIPAA compliance.  

Set Up a Fee Schedule

Another important part of setting up your organizing operations is to come up with a fee schedule. This is a simple list of all of the services that you will offer and how much money you will charge for each.

One of the best ways for you to do this is to see what other companies in your area are charging.

Ask your colleagues for a copy of their fee schedule so you can get a better sense of what you should charge. See what adjustments you need to make so that your company can stay above water.

Delegate Employee Roles

This is the stage where you want to know how many crew members you are going to need to help run the practice. For example, a doctor who decides not to outsource billing and expects to have a lot of patients would assign an employee to handle scheduling and billing. They will also want a medical assistant or nurse. 

Also, medical practices that depend on medicare reimbursements might want to hire a compliance officer to make sure that all requirements are being met. 

The Importance of Having a Medical Practice Checklist  

Hopefully, after reading the above article, you now have a better idea of what items you should have on your medical practice checklist. As we can see, there is a lot that needs to be done before you can get your medical practice up and running. But by following the checklist above, you should be ready to start your business without an issue.

Are you looking for other helpful and interesting articles? Check out the rest of our site today for more!

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Stock vs. Royalty Free Photos: What Are the Differences?

A picture is worth a thousand royalty fees.

Took a swerve at the end there, huh? It’s true: there’s a lot of complexity attached to using images you find online. If you’re looking for images and have run into a baffling maze of terminology, we’re here to clear things up.

Here’s the difference between stock and royalty-free photos, and what it means for you.

What Are Stock Photos?

The idea behind stock photos isn’t complicated: it’s a way of sourcing your images through a third party.

Where things get complicated is on the matter of copyright, licensing, and royalties. Most stock photos have these in place, meaning you have to pay for their use. Many of these are royalty-based—you have to pay each time you use the image. The photographer is just like a musician getting paid when their song plays on the radio.

Free stock photos exist but you’ll need to check the license of even a free photo before you use it. Some may be free for personal use but not for commercial use, for example.

What Does Royalty-Free Mean?

Stock vs royalty-free is something of a false dichotomy. In fact, royalty-free images are a subset of stock photos.

What makes royalty-free photos different is their licensing structure. Instead of having to pay to use each instance of a photo, you can use a royalty-free image an unlimited number of times after you purchase its license (if it has one.)

Don’t let the word “free” fool you. A royalty-free image isn’t always free to use (though free royalty-free photo sites exist) and it’s still protected under copyright. All it means is that you won’t pay ongoing royalties for the use of an image.

As with other stock photos, check the terms of the license before you use a royalty-free image.

What’s the Difference?

If you’ve been paying close attention, you’ll note that the main difference between stock and royalty-free photos is the pricing expectation.

Although stock photos can be free to use, most aren’t. A stock’s license controls its use. If you don’t pay for the license, you can’t use the image, and that license may include ongoing royalties. Royalty-free stock may have an initial cost, but you won’t have to pay royalties on its use.

This also leads to another key difference: exclusivity. If you want an image that you won’t see replicated elsewhere (e.g. on a competitor’s site) then a limited license stock photo is the way to go.

In contrast, royalty-free images are more generous. You can use the image as you like after purchasing its license without paying further royalty fees. The drawback is that the license doesn’t guarantee exclusivity. There’s a good chance people have already seen the image you’ve chosen dozens of times in other contexts.

Stock vs Royalty-Free Photos: The Difference Explained

Copyright and usage licenses aren’t the easiest things to grasp. With this guide, you can find the photos you need for your next project—without burning your cash on royalty fees.

Looking for more handy knowledge? Check back often to see what’s new.Stock vs. Royalty Free Photos: What Are the Differences?

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Everything to Consider When Choosing a Business Insurance Company

Every year, more than 627,000 new small businesses open their doors. During that first year, there’s a lot to figure out, but one of the most important things you’ll need to do is figure out how to protect your business.

Buying a comprehensive business insurance policy is key. But finding the best business insurance company to partner with isn’t as simple as you might think.

You need to know what to look for so you can get the best business insurance options possible. Here are a few key things to consider when you start your search.

Consider Their Offerings

Not all business insurance agencies offer the same types of coverage. When you’re starting to look at your options, pay attention to the types of coverage each company provides.

At a minimum, you’ll want general liability insurance, workers’ compensation coverage, property insurance, and professional liability coverage.

If a company doesn’t offer all of the types of insurance you need, keep looking. The last thing you want to deal with is having to buy coverage from several insurance providers.

Pay Attention to the Way the Agents Treat You

Shopping around for coverage and getting quotes on business insurance options is the best way to find coverage you can afford. But it’s also the perfect time to interview the agents you speak with.

According to the team at L J Adams Insurance Services LLC, the agents you speak with should take the time to get to know you and identify your business’s unique risk factors. If you’re offered a quote without the insurance company finding out more about your concerns, keep looking.

Remember, if agents aren’t responsive when you’re trying to buy coverage, they won’t be responsive if you have to file a claim.

Check Out Each Company’s References and Reviews

Though it’s tempting to focus on comparing insurance costs, looking at price alone isn’t the best idea. You need to make sure the insurance company is reliable and trustworthy.

Research their reputation in detail. Read online reviews about the company and pay attention to any repeat concerns mentioned in those reviews. If other clients found it difficult to file a claim or complain about overly low settlements, you’ll likely have the same experience.

You can also ask the company for references. Reputable companies can connect you with other business owners that are willing to discuss their experiences with you.

The Right Business Insurance Company Makes All the Difference

Working with the right business insurance company can help you keep your business running smoothly for years to come. As long as you consider these key things when you start shopping for coverage, you’ll be able to find a company you can rely on.

Keep in mind that buying insurance for businesses is just the first step in keeping your business safe. Check out our blog for more tips and tricks to help you reduce your business’s risks for years to come.Everything to Consider When Choosing a Business Insurance Company

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How to Send Money Internationally Safely and Quickly


Americans send billions of dollars abroad every year. Many of us have family or friends in other countries who need financial assistance from time to time for bills and other essentials.

If you want to know how to send money internationally, our guide is here to help you. There are many ways to send money internationally, but they weren’t created equal: some charge massive fees, which you want to avoid if at all possible.

Are you ready to learn more about sending money internationally without breaking the bank? Then read on and start saving money!

  1. Bank Transfers

Banks will offer international transfers as part of their services, and this is the first stop for most of us. The problem is this approach often comes with serious fees.

Bank transfers will charge a flat fee per transaction, and will also take a percentage of the money that you send.

While the fees will vary from bank to bank, the recipient will always lose out. Banks are the traditional way to send money abroad, but you should avoid them if possible.

  1. Mailing a Check

If you want to go very old-school, you can still send someone a check in the mail. While this approach has its obvious downsides, such as slow speed, it is an affordable choice as you will only need to pay postage.

Checks from US banks are typically accepted abroad, but it may take longer to cash a check than normal, as the recipient’s bank may need to verify the transaction with your bank.

The recipient will also normally need to pay a fee to cash the check, as well as converting the money to the local currency.

  1. Remitters

Western Union and other remitters are another popular way to send money abroad. However, when you wire money abroad with these companies, you’ll still need to pay fees, which can add up.

While they may be a better option than banks, there are still better options out there.

  1. PayPal

For many people, PayPal is the easiest way to send money abroad. All you need is the other person’s email address: no bank details or other information is required. You can log onto PayPal in seconds and have the money sent in just a few more.

However, while PayPal is very easy to use and doesn’t require much technical know-how, the recipient will still need to pay a fee if they want to withdraw their cash. 

  1. Fintech Startups

If you want to avoid fees, you should try using fintech startups such as WireSmartly. These companies do still charge fees on transactions, but they tend to be a very low fee. What’s more, these startups will usually deposit the money directly into the recipient’s bank account within seconds or minutes.

These companies are the best option for sending money abroad for most people.

How to Send Money Internationally: Answered

We hope that you’ve enjoyed this guide on how to send money internationally. You’ve got a lot of options in the modern forex marketplace, but if you want the best service and the lowest fees, you should give startups a try!

For more informative articles like this, check out the rest of our blog.

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What Do Firefighters Wear?: A Quick Guide to Firefighting PPE

There are more than 1.1 million firefighters working across the United States at the moment. These play an essential role in keeping American citizens safe at work, on the road, and in their homes. 

However, for firefighters to stay safe while at work they need proper firefighting PPE (or personal protection equipment). So what do firefighters wear? Read on to find out everything you need to know about firefighter protective gear.

Basic Firefighting PPE

Basic firefighting equipment involves all the standard firefighting clothing. This includes: 

  • A fire helmet 
  • Turnout pants and jackets
  • Gloves 
  • Boots

All fire helmets and clothing have to be made of extremely durable, heatproof equipment. Pants and jackets generally have two layers of fabric to keep heat and moisture out.

All clothing and helmets feature bright colors and reflective strips. This makes it easier to see them in dark or smoke-filled rooms.

The color of a firefighter’s helmet can also tell you something about their rank. Rank-and-file fire fighters usually wear yellow helmets, while captains wear red or orange ones. White helmets are exclusively worn by fire chiefs.

You can read more on to find out about the attributes of effective PPE.

Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus

Firefighter gear doesn’t just have to protect a person’s exterior. A lot of firefighting environments can contain materials or gases that could cause internal damage if inhaled. In fact, this is the most common cause of death in house fires across the country.

Because of this, self-contained breathing apparatus is also a standard part of all firefighting PPE. This can protect against smoke and toxic gas inhalation. 

Breathing apparatus includes a face mask that connects to an oxygen tank. This tank is usually worn on the back when entering a housefire. It should provide at least 30 minutes worth of safe, breathable air.

This makes it easier and safer for firefighters to search for victims in smoke-filled environments.

Personal Alert Safety Systems

Just because firefighters have brilliant training, this doesn’t mean that they’re invincible. In fact, they are regularly exposed to life-threatening environments. So it is very important to keep their personal safety in mind. 

This is why every firefighter should have a Personal Alert Safety System (also known as PASS) as part of their PPE. This is a wearable device that monitors the position of each firefighter. This allows other safety officials to track a firefighter’s location from a distance. 

A PASS also contains a transmitter that a firefighter can activate if they get into difficulty. This device automatically activates if the PASS doesn’t detect movement for a certain period of time. The alert makes it easier for firefighters in the surrounding area to locate their colleague in trouble.

Firefighter PPE Saves Lives

Firefighting PPE keeps firefighters safe across a whole range of duties. So having high-quality and up-to-date equipment is absolutely essential.

For more great life inspiration and advice, keep scrolling now!


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Should you buy fire rated ?

In a country like Australia, one gets quite used to seeing things going ablaze. After the recent forest fires, it has many people thinking about what would happen if the fire were to reach their homes at some point in time? What could they do to protect their family from being engulfed in flames? How would they even fight or at the minimum slow the fire down? Now, they have come across a lot of fire retardant tools with the most important tool being fire rated doors.

What is a fire rated door?

Fire rated doors or fire retardant doors are those that are specifically produced to slow down or stop the fire from spreading inwards to the home. It has been designed to make sure that within a particular time frame it will not combust or let any smoke enter the room. This has been made to ensure that the structure of the room and its occupants remain unharmed as most of the harm from the fire and most of the lives lost come from the poor structural framework. While the ratings of the average fire door keep changing, the most common period for a fire-rated door ranges between 20 – 60 – 90 minutes.

Where can they be used?

The fire-rated door can and should be installed everywhere in residential buildings, offices, schools, factories and dormitories. These doors however are not designed to be fireproof. They are made of wood and combustible materials although they will resist the penetration of heat, smoke and fire for a particular period before they combust into flames. Fires can be extremely dangerous because it just takes one spark to burn everything that a person has spent their life building to the ground in a matter of minutes. Smoke is equally dangerous, especially in a situation where the person is trapped, smoke will displace the precious air that they require.

Benefits of a fire rated door

Fire doors not only play a part in stopping the dire from approaching and taking the lives of their family, but they also play a mental role. They help the family get better sleep and give them peace knowing that if an unfortunate incident like that were to take place, the fire-rated door would be there to keep them safe and keep the heat and flames out for long enough for them to save themselves.

The average cost of a fire rated door is on the higher end of the

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Importance of Port of Chennai in Indian Maritime Route

Located on the southeastern coast, the Port of Chennai is one of the most important ports in the Indian maritime route and a famous shipping lane for the world. It has been serving the country’s commerce for nearly a century and with this fact, it is named among the third oldest ports in India. Keep reading further to know more about the port of Chennai and its importance!

Port of Chennai – General Overview 

The Port of Chennai is the first-ever dedicated container terminal which was opened back in 1983 and is currently operated by the Chennai Container Terminal Private Limited (CCTPL). Among the 13 largest ports, it is the third oldest port in the country. Although maritime trade started much earlier in 1639 before its official establishment, the Port became much more popular once it was fully developed. 

Formerly known as Madras Port, the Port of Chennai is an all-weather port that was once an important travel port before independence. After 1947, it became the major container port which now plays a key role in Indian commerce. At present, it is a primary factor leading to the thriving growth of Tamil Nadu and especially the manufacturing industry of the South. The Port of Chennai is the primary reason why Chennai is known as the Gateway of South India. [Learn more here:

The Importance of The Port of Chennai 

The Port of Chennai is a major hub for port containers, cargo and cars on the east coast of the country. From handling a restricted volume of cargo at the beginning of its existence to handling massive volumes of oil and automobile imports, the Port has begun handling over and about 60 million tonnes of cargo in recent times. 

Back in 2018, the container traffic of the port crossed 1 million TEUs, which is phenomenal. Further, in 2011, it was ranked as the 86th largest container port on the globe and there were plans for extending its capacity by 140 million tonnes per year, which is hopefully under execution. 

The port plays a major role in connecting India’s economy with the world. Note that, it connects India to around 50 major ports in the world. As far as its operations are considered, it operates 24 hours and 365 days regardless of season and weather, making it a continuous working hub. Another reason that makes the port of Chennai a very important part of India is its high efficiency. 

It boasts berthing on arrival, less than an hour of pre-berthing detention and an average turnover of merely two days, which accounts for its higher efficiency. It is worth noting that this Port has also established the first-ever Marine Pollution Management system in the country with an aim to protect and conserve marine life. Further, it is also working on extra land area by dredging and filling. This additional land work has resulted in 7.8 hectares of land behind the East Quay and will add around 60 hectares on the Gate 1 during its second stage. 

The significance of the Port of Chennai can be learned from the fact that during the 2010-11 shipping seasons, it handled more than 61.5 million tonnes of cargo single-handedly. Not just that, it handles nearly 20 million tons of iron ore and coal out of which 8 million tons is coal and the rest is iron ore.  During this period, the port also handled its first container terminal of over 1.5 million TEUs and a second terminal with more than thirty thousand TEUs. 

Today, the Port of Chennai is the sole reason behind the smooth functioning of the country’s manufacturing, textile and automobile sector. It not only contributes to India’s growing economy but also connects it globally. 

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What Is the Difference Between Advertising and Public Relations?

Growing your business means spreading the word. And spreading the word means using both public relations and marketing.

But do you know the difference between advertising and public relations off the top of your head? Truthfully, many business owners don’t. But that doesn’t have to stop you from utilizing both and understand how each plays an important role in your growth strategy.

Keep reading to learn more about how both facets play into your company’s evolution!

They’re Not The Same?

Nope! It’s a common misconception, but public relations and advertising teams have two different tasks within a business.

In fact, while the two might work together during certain portions of a marketing campaign, they often work as two separate teams altogether.

What are Public Relations?

What is public relations? Think of it this way: When managing a small business, you need to connect with other businesses and individuals for mutual benefit.

A PR person’s main job is to create positive and meaningful relationships with outside parties.

Let’s take a press release for example.

Upon first glance, it might seem like the only party benefiting from the publication of a press release is the company sending the release. On the contrary, posting a story featuring a press release gives a website content, and thus encourages visitors to continue visiting the site.

As Mind Meld PR’s great dive into the world of PR points out, Public relations strategies are all about opening up new avenues of communication and building a company’s reputation.

Speaking of reputation building, that brings us to another major role a PR team plays within a brand. They’re tasked with cleaning up any unfortunate incidents that might tarnish a company’s reputation.

If a company is in the midst of dealing with a major data leak, for example, a PR agent may put out a public statement on behalf of their employer discussing the incident and what’s being done to right any wrong that was done.

So What’s Advertising?

Advertising refers to a company’s paid strategy through various types of advertising. This might include things like coming up with ideas for a television ad, writing web copy, or crafting social media messages to reach the biggest number of people.

Likewise, an advertising team will have little to no interaction with outside businesses, whereas that’s a major component of working in public relations. PR is about opening a dialogue to generate publicity, whereas advertising is concerned with exposure to the public and turning that exposure into a sale.

It’s a matter of sales vs. reputation, really.

Better Understanding the Difference Between Advertising and Public Relations

So, to recap, what’s the difference between advertising and public relations? Though they both work toward the same end goal, their strategies are quite different.

A PR team focuses on a business’s public perception. They’re tasked with raising exposure and addressing controversies.

Advertising, on the other hand, strives for growth via sales.

Have any more questions about PR or advertising? Make sure to check out the content on our advertising blog for more!

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What is Naturalization? A Complete Overview of U.S.A. Citizenship

Are you considering becoming a citizen of the United States of America? If so, you need to take action today. Applying to become a citizen of this country takes over a year and can cost a pretty penny. So start by applying for a green card and make sure you are saving money so that you can get started on your new life in a new country. A new beginning is closer than you might think.

Continue reading to learn what you need to know about the process for U.S. Citizenship.

How to Become a Citizen

Naturalization is the process that immigrants must go through to become U.S. citizens. The process is dependent on immigrant eligibility and can take between 16 and 22 months to get through all the steps.

Green card holders are able to apply for naturalization based on:

  • The length of time they’ve held a green card
  • The length of time they’ve lived in the U.S.
  • Whether they served in the military or not

Before you can begin your Application for Naturalization, you have to be a permanent resident/green card holder. So, What Is A Green Card and How to Get One? Check out this guide for more information.

Once you have all of that figured out, the steps to becoming an American Citizen is rather straightforward.

Costs of Citizenship

The naturalization process costs $725. This is a $640 processing fee along with the $85 fee for biometrics. The entire amount is waived for military personnel. The cost of biometrics gets waived for applicants 75 years and older. Low-income individuals may get the fees reduced or even waived completely.

Applying for Naturalization

The first step involves filing the Application for Naturalization (Form N-400) and paying the filing fee. Approximately one month after filing the application, the second step occurs. You will attend your Biometrics Appointment where the USCIS will have your fingerprinting done.

The third step involves the Citizenship Interview and Exam. The two events will occur simultaneously about 14 months after the application is submitted. The interview is meant to verify that all of the information on the application is correct. 

The exam consists of two parts. The first is the English Language Test where your reading, writing, and speaking abilities get tested. The second part focuses on Civics where your knowledge of U.S. history and the government is tested. After you take the exam, you will get a letter in the mail stating whether you’ve passed or failed.

The final step, once you’ve passed the testing stage, is to attend a ceremony where you pledge your allegiance to the United States. At the ceremony, you will turn in your green card and receive your Certificate of Naturalization. Once complete, you are an American citizen.

Are You Ready to Become an American Citizen?

The sooner you have a U.S. citizenship status, the sooner you will be able to reap the rewards of being an American citizen. Once you are a citizen, you can no longer be deported, you can apply for a passport, and you can sponsor a relative’s green card. 

If you found this post to be helpful, make sure to check out our other articles about travel, law, and finance.

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