What are the two most expensive and important things in retirement? Housing and medical costs. As such, you probably want to review this list of the best states for health care.
In 2014, health spending accounted for 17.5% of the national GDP, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Even more, by 2025, that percentage is expected to increase by about 2.6%.
With health care costs skyrocketing, choosing a place to live that has quality health care will give you the best bang for your buck as well as ensure you’re in the hands of great care providers.
Higher costs don’t always mean better care and treatment, so WalletHub ranked the best and worst states for health care for 2016. The findings are based on health care costs, access to health care and health outcomes.
Taking the number one spot on the list for the best state sfor health care in 2016 is Minnesota. Overall, Minnesota had the best score and was found to have the lowest average monthly insurance premium. The state was also ranked as the third best state with the highest physician medicare acceptance rates, according to WalletHub.
- Maryland came in second place overall, but ranked number one in best health care costs and third for the most physicians per capita.
- In third place for best states for health care is South Dakota. They also came in third for best access to health care and second for most hospital beds per capita.
- Taking fourth and fifth place overall are South Dakota, Iowa and Utah (tie), respectively. South Dakota also came in third place for health care access and Iowa came in fifth for having the best health care costs, the study found.
Other notable states include Colorado, coming in first place as the state with the lowest rate of heart disease. North Dakota took first place as the state with the highest physician medicare acceptance rates.
Alaska was found to be the worst state for health care and has the highest health care costs in the country, according to the study.
Louisiana and Mississippi preceded Alaska as the worst states for health care. Mississippi has the second worst health outcomes and Louisiana has the worst.
Wyoming and Alaska are tied for the highest average monthly insurance premium followed by New Jersey, New York and Indiana.
States with low medicare acceptance rates may be something you would like to avoid when choosing a state to live in for retirement. The state with the lowest physician Medicare acceptance rate is Hawaii. The District of Columbia, Oregon, California and New York follow, according to the study.
Finding the right balance between the cost of premium and level of coverage is vital to success in retirement. You can do so by making sure you are fully aware of your eligibility for premium subsidies as well as if you’re eligible for financial support, John E. McDonough, professor of practice in the Department of Health Policy & Management at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, suggested in the study.
Considering that housing and healthcare are costly retirement expenses, it is worth considering how to minimize these expenditures.
1. Have an Overall Plan: Housing and healthcare costs should be important aspects of your overall retirement plan. However, many retirement calculators and even some financial advisors do not explicitly include these costs and assets.
The NewRetirement retirement calculator is one of the few online tools that really integrates housing and medical into your overall plan. Best of all, you can try different scenarios. See what happens if you have supplemental coverage. Find out if your estate improves if you downsize. Set your own inflation projections and much more…
2. Consider Downsizing: Downsizing can mean moving to a smaller home. It can also mean moving somewhere less expensive. Downsizing can be a great way to make your retirement more affordable — and there is a double bonus if you can move somewhere with better quality healthcare. In fact, there are a lot of potential advantages to downsizing in retirement.
Getting a reverse mortgage can be an interesting alternative to downsizing if you already love where you live.
3. Optimize Supplemental Medicare Coverage: Basic Medicare only covers a percentage of your medical bills. According to analysis, average out-of-pocket health care spending by Medicare beneficiaries is sizable and increases with age. You can minimize your exposure to these costs by having the right supplemental plan. And, you should re evaluate your choice of supplemental coverage each year since these plans change and your health status changes too.
Compare supplemental Medicare plans right now.