Navigating the System

Empower yourself as a patient, and learn how to get the most out of your benefits. Each plan is different, so this section of our guide will help you understand what it is that you should look for when you receive your insurance information.  This section will help you navigate the health care system when you need care.

Topic Area: Urgent or Emergency Care

If I have an emergency, do I need to worry about the network? What if they want to admit me?

If it’s an emergency, call 911 or go to the emergency room right away!

Emergency rooms are open 24 hours a day for injuries or illnesses that pose a threat to someone’s life or long-term health. If you have a medical emergency, go to the closest hospital — you’ll be treated whether you have health insurance or not.

If you go to an emergency room, you may not have a choice about what doctor provides care. Even if you have health insurance and go to an in-network emergency room, you may receive care from an out-of-network provider.

If you enrolled in a plan through New Hampshire's Federally Facilitated Health Insurance Marketplace, the insurance company can’t charge you more in co-payments or co-insurance if you receive emergency services in-network or out-of-network. However, the amount you owe depends on your health plan. You can use the Health Costs  section of this site to compare what emergency services may cost at different facilities or for different plans.

In emergency situations, health insurance companies can’t require you to get prior approval — and health plans cover a portion of emergency care, no matter where you are, even if you’re out of network.


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