Advantages / Disadvantages of PPOs

In the United States, we either get our health care through our employers or pay for it out of our own pockets. Senior citizens get Medicare, and people under a certain income level get Medicaid. One type of health care that many people enjoy is the preferred provider organization, or PPO. PPOs are everywhere, and they have their pros and cons.

Advantages of PPO Plans

The pros of using a preferred provider organization can fundamentally be boiled down to options in choice. With a PPO, you the subscriber have a wider array of options within your network, as opposed to, say, someone who subscribes to an HMO plan. With a PPO, you also have greater financial freedom in that you pay your share of health care services as you use them – meaning, there is no monthly fee to pay in advance in order to access your health care. HMOs, by contrast, require a monthly payment be made in order to take advantage of services.

Disadvantages of PPO Plans

Arguably the biggest disadvantage to a PPO is the cost. PPOs may offer you a wider “range of motion” within the network, but you pay for it through generally higher co-pays than those found in other health care organizations.

To learn more about preferred provider organizations, health care benefits, doctor networks and other aspects of managed health care, be sure to consult with a health care professional. A preferred provider organization may be perfect for your needs, or you could get along well with another choice.