What is Vision Insurance?

Vision Of Eyechart With Glasses
Creative Commons License photo credit: kenteegardin 

If you have routine eye exams or purchase corrective vision materials, the amount that you spend on your eyes each year can add up quickly. Having vision insurance will help to offset these costs. It is important to know that vision insurance is only a supplement to other insurance programs. Regular health insurance will protect you against financial loss due to injury or disease. For this cause, it is important to have regular health insurance, and supplemental vision insurance.

What does vision insurance cover?

Vision insurance will usually cover your basic eye examinations and vision materials. Some companies may cover, or offer a discount, on the cost of Lasik surgery as well. Most insurance plans are customizable for the individual, meaning that you can include certain services and products on your plan that only you specifically need. Vision insurance typically covers:

• Eye examinations
• Frames
• Contact lenses
• Discounted rates for Lasik surgery

Where can you get vision insurance?

There are a couple of options when it comes to obtaining vision insurance. Group insurance is usually attained through an employer, school district, or government plan like Medicaid or Medicare. Group insurance might not be attainable if you are self-employed, or if your company does not offer a separate vision plan. If this is the case, you can still purchase an individual vision plan through a top vision insurance company, such as Vision Service Plan (VSP), EyeMed, or Spectera.

What types of plans are available?

Most vision companies will offer either a vision benefits package or a discount vision plan. Whichever you choose is up to you and your needs, but here are a couple of distinctions between the two:

• Vision benefits package – Provides free eye care services and products such as frames, prescriptions, and contact lenses. An annual membership fee or premium is required, and services are covered within a fixed dollar amount. A small co-pay is usually applied to each visit.

• Discount vision plan – You only have to pay a discounted price for eye care services and products after you pay the annual premium for the plan.

Both vision plans can be custom designed to your individual needs.

Vision insurance is a great supplement to your regular health insurance provider. If you have a large family, or frequently visit the optometrist, you will want to look into acquiring vision insurance.

Guest author Sara Roberts writes for Just Eyewear, an online retailer of prescription eyeglasses and sunglasses.