“We work for the people of the state of Washington,” said Shawna Crume-Bruce, Marketing Manager at Washington Healthplanfinder. “In this marketplace, there’s definitely some competition among the carriers. It causes premiums to go down and it allows for us to try and make health care coverage as easy as possible.”

One of the best features of Washington Healthplanfinder, Crume-Bruce said, is that in addition to the online search tools, there are people standing by waiting to help users through the process. Washington Healthplanfinder offers options for getting assistance from healthcare brokers and insurance plan navigators, that can be accessed at in-person enrollment centers, through the WAPlanfinder mobile app and through video or phone assistance.

“Health care coverage, really any insurance, is not easy to figure out on your own,” Crume- Bruce said. “You can do it online yourself, but then you’re still navigating it without a partner.”

Crume-Bruce said that these trained professionals know what questions to ask to ensure that the plan each person chooses ends up being the best fit for its real-world use.

Some individuals, she said, regularly visit the doctor for ongoing treatment of the condition. That predictability will require heavier scrutiny of each plan to find the one that saves the most money throughout the year. Other individuals, Crume-Bruce points out, are healthy and hardly go to the doctor.

Another reason to visit Washington Healthplanfinder is to check out the Cascade Care plans, which are insurance offerings that can only be found through the Washington Healthplanfinder. Designed by state officials but administered through private insurers, these plans were created with the goal of increasing Washingtonians’ access to high-quality health care coverage.

For the end user, Crume-Bruce said, it means removing some of the guesswork around budgeting for healthcare costs. More services are covered before meeting the deductible, so the individual is paying a set amount for copays, generic drugs, mental health services and urgent care.

“It makes it predictable for what costs are going to be when seeking services,” she said.

Get more information at WAHealthplanfinder.org