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Question: 15
What is an epic?
A. A low-level requirement
B. A fine-grained user story
C. A detailed feature
D. A high-level requirement
Answer: D
Reference: rue&expandNav=true
Question: 16
Which process can take place during a release review workshop?
A. Controlling a stage
B. Managing product delivery
C. Managing a stage boundary
D. Directing a project
Answer: B
Question: 17
Which statement about the âprotect the level of qualityâ target is CORRECT?
A. It is achieved by allowing enough time for testing
B. It is achieved by using the same team members
C. It gives confidence on the progress of the project
D. It delivers the early realization of benefits
Answer: D
Question: 18
Which is often used during a retrospective to capture lessons?
A. A Glad! Sad! Mad! board
B. A Kanban board
C. A burn chart
D. A Gantt chart
Answer: A
Reference: rue&expandNav=true
Question: 19
Which statement explains how the âlearn from experienceâ principle is applied in an agile context?
A. It focuses on the prioritization and decomposition of requirements
B. It integrates releases within management stages
C. It is supported by the âinspect and adaptâ concept
D. It provides guidance on mapping PRINCE2 roles to an agile environment
Answer: C
Question: 20
How does agile address the risk associated with the project not being fully understood at the beginning?
A. By allowing a lot of detail at the start
B. By avoiding too much detail at the start
C. By requiring details at the start
D. By preventing the analysis of details at the start
Answer: D
Question: 21
What should be emphasized when tailoring the PRINCE2 Progress theme?
A. Monitoring what is being delivered
B. Tracking time and cost
C. Planning resources
D. Assessing the impact of risks
Answer: A
Question: 22
In Scrum, what answers the question âwhat can be done this sprint?â
A. Daily scrum
B. Sprint review
C. Sprint planning
D. Increment
Answer: A
Question: 23
What needs to happen when new detailed requirements are added to a timebox?
A. Requirements of a similar level of effort should be removed
B. More people should be added to the delivery team
C. The delivery milestones should be reviewed and re-planned
D. Formal change control should be applied
Answer: A
Question: 24
What term is used to describe boards that display what work needs to be completed for people working on a project?
A. Work in progress limit
B. Information radiator
C. Highlight report
D. Glad! Sad! Mad!
Answer: C
Reference: rue&expandNav=true
Question: 25
In which area is Agile strongest when blending with PRINCE2?
A. Product delivery
B. Project management
C. Project direction
D. Product management
Answer: A
picture/#:~:text=This%20framework%20is%20based%20on,the%20area%20of%20product %20delivery
Question: 26
Which statement about the waterfall methodology definition is CORRECT?
A. It states that deadlines should not be moved
B. It has distinct goals for each stage of development
C. It is a behavior that involves making things transparent
D. It promotes the use of experiments carried out in a scientific way
Answer: B
Question: 27
How is the âtailor to suit the projectâ principle applied in an agile context?
A. By flexing what is produced to stay in control and deliver value
B. By emphasizing tolerances on what is being delivered
C. By using the Agilometer to assess the project environment
D. By fitting releases into planned management stages
Answer: A
Question: 28
Which statement about quality tolerances for a product is CORRECT in an agile context?
A. All quality criteria tolerance must be fixed
B. Quality tolerances should be the same for all quality criteria
C. Setting quality tolerance relies on prioritising quality criteria
D. All quality criteria should have zero tolerance
Answer: C
Question: 29
Which statement about the âprotect the level of qualityâ target is CORRECT?
A. It is achieved by ensuring that all features are delivered
B. It is unlikely to be achieved if incomplete user documentation is provided
C. It allows change at the detailed level to be handled dynamically
D. It avoids the use of extra people to Strengthen progress during a timebox
Answer: A
Question: 30
Which statement explains the target âbe on time and hit deadlinesâ for flexible delivery?
A. It reduces testing in order to meet deadlines
B. It sets the project baseline at the correct level
C. It enables team dynamics to remain the same
D. It improves the supplier's reputation with the customer
Answer: A

Prince2 Foundation health - BingNews Search results Prince2 Foundation health - BingNews PRINCE2 Foundation

PRINCE2 (an acronym for PRojects IN Controlled Environments) is a de facto process-based method for effective project management.

Used extensively by the UK Government, PRINCE2 is also widely recognised and used in the private sector, both in the UK and internationally. 2017 saw an update to the PRINCE2 qualification for the first time in eight years, following feedback from the global PRINCE2 community. 

Our accredited PRINCE2 Foundation classroom course introduces you to PRINCE2, and helps prepare you for the Foundation examination, which assesses whether you can demonstrate sufficient recall and understanding of the PRINCE2 project management method. This course conforms to the PRINCE2 2017 syllabus. 

*attend this face to face course and gain access to the PRINCE2 Practitioner eLearning free of charge for 6 months, exam not included but can be purchased separately. 
PRINCE2® Foundation and Practitioner, are offered by ILX Group an ATO of AXELOS Limited. PRINCE2® is a registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved. 

Who should attend?

The target audience for this qualification is:
Project Managers and aspiring Project Managers
Other key staff involved in the design, development and delivery of
projects, including:
• Project board members (e.g. Senior Responsible Owners)
• Team managers (e.g. Pr oduct Delivery Managers)
• Project assurance (e.g. Business C hange Analysts)
• Project suppor t (e.g. Pr oject and Pr ogramme Office personnel)
• Operational line managers/staff

How will I benefit?

By the end of the PRINCE2 Foundation classroom course you should
be able to:
Understand key concepts relating to projects and PRINCE2
Understand how the PRINCE2 principles underpin the PRINCE2 method
Understand the PRINCE2 themes and how they are applied throughout
the project
Understand the PRINCE2 processes and how they are carried out
throughout the project

Wed, 11 Oct 2017 13:48:00 -0500 en text/html
5 Best Project Management Certifications

No matter how small, where it’s located or what industry it serves, every business needs to rely on project management to be successful. Without effective project managers, a company would have difficulty delivering new products and services to customers, growing revenue and meeting other critical business objectives.

Besides earning a degree, an aspiring or current project management professional can also enroll in courses and earn certifications in project management to go the extra mile. Knowing which certificates are worth the time, energy and money can be challenging with so many choices.

Continue practicing to learn about project management certifications and how they could benefit someone looking to increase their knowledge, Strengthen their skills and land a project management position.

Jump to:

Why earn a project management certification?

Project management skills can help job seekers Strengthen their marketability and show potential employers what value they can bring to an organization. Projects are getting more complex and resource intensive, meaning employers need to invest in a solid project manager with expertise and project management skills to get the job done.

Project managers are in demand in virtually every industry, from construction to advertising and everything in between. When a hiring manager or recruiter parses through thousands of resumes, those with a project management certification may rank higher, meaning that those candidates would have a higher chance of being hired at an organization. While this isn’t a guarantee, it’s commonly understood that earning this type of certification can increase an applicant’s value and help a project manager get hired faster.

A project management certification can also help you command a higher salary: A Project Management Institute survey found that U.S. project managers who earned a Project Management Professional certification reported 32% higher salaries than those who didn’t. While they do require an upfront investment in terms of time and money, for many project managers, getting a certification pays dividends down the road.

SEE: Hiring kit: Project manager (TechRepublic Premium)

Best project management certifications

For those interested in receiving a project management certification, it’s worth researching which one will help Strengthen their skills, build their knowledge and potentially advance their career. Below are some of the best project management certifications to consider.

PMP certification

In simple terms, the Project Management Professional certification is the most recognized in the project management industry. It’s considered the “gold standard” for project management and more than 1,200,000 professionals hold a PMP certification worldwide. Top-performing companies like ExxonMobil, Apple, Exelon and SAIC often hire project managers with a PMP certification. Those who earn this certification can typically work in any industry, use any methodology and succeed in various situations.

There are helpful online training courses available for professionals who want to sit for the PMP exam and earn the certification, but the training courses aren’t included in the cost of the exam. Giving the length and breadth of the exam, studying before is strongly encouraged.

The PMI PMP logo.
PMI PMP logo


You must either have a four-year degree and 36 months of experience leading projects within the past eight years or a high school diploma or Associates Degree and 60 months of experience leading projects within the past eight years. You must also have 35 hours of project management education/training or Certified Associate in Project Management certification (CAPM®).

Key skills tested

  • Demonstrating the skills to lead and motivate a project team
  • Showing how the success of a project impacts overall strategic goals
  • Choosing whether a predictive, agile or hybrid approach will work best for a particular project

Key differentiators

  • Top ranked project management certification that is recognized globally
  • Excellent choice for experienced project managers who want a certification
  • Can be used with many different project management methodologies

Duration of exam

The exam contains 180 questions and has a time limit of 230 minutes.

Cost of exam

The PMP exam costs $405 for members and $575 for nonmembers.

CAPM certification

If you don’t have enough experience to sit for the PMP, the CAPM certification is a more suitable option for those early in their professional project management career. The CAPM certification demonstrates that an entry-level project manager has a strong foundation in project management and can help young professionals become more marketable to potential employers.

Before earning the PMP certification, many novice project managers will need to complete training and receive the CAPM certification. Earning the CAPM certification is easier as it has fewer requirements than the PMP, only mandating 23 hours of project management education.

The PMI CAPM logo.


You must have a secondary degree, such as a high school diploma, GED (general educational development) or global equivalent. You must also have at least 23 contact hours of project management education completed before the exam, which can be fulfilled by taking a course from PMI or another organization.

Key skills tested

  • Fundamentals of project management and the role of project managers
  • Project management environment and project integration management
  • Project scope, schedule, cost, quality and resource management
  • Project procurement, communication, stakeholder and risk management

Key differentiators

  • More suitable for early career professionals than the PMP exam
  • Training education is required but not included in exam price
  • Covers the fundamentals of project management, not tied to a specific methodology

Duration of exam

The exam contains 150 questions and has a time limit of three hours.

Cost of exam

The CAPM exam costs $225 for members and $300 for nonmembers. The exam cost is separate from any training courses that you pay for.

DOWNLOAD: The TechRepublic project management checklist

PRINCE2 Foundation/PRINCE2 Practitioner certification

The PRINCE2 Foundation and PRINCE2 Practitioner certifications are two other highly sought-after certifications for project managers. Government agencies and organizations often look for candidates with these certifications, which are delivered by AXELOS, a joint venture between the U.K. government and Capita.

These certifications can help professionals Strengthen their skills and capabilities. They both focus on managing a project from the start (initiation) to finish (delivery). The PRINCE2 Foundation is a more basic certification and the PRINCE2 Practitioner is more advanced. Many people choose to earn the Foundation certification first and then later go on to get the Practitioner certification.

The PRINCE2 logo.
PRINCE2 logo


There are no prerequisites for the PRINCE2 Foundation exam besides completing the accompanying course. In order to take the PRINCE2 Practitioner exam, you must provide proof of a current certification from the following list:

  • PRINCE2 Foundation (5th Edition or 6th Edition version)
  • Project Management Professional (PMP)
  • Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)
  • IPMA Level A (Certified Projects Director)
  • IPMA Level B (Certified Senior Project Manager)
  • IPMA Level C (Certified Project Manager)
  • IPMA Level D (Certified Project Management Associate)

Key skills tested

  • Understanding of PRINCE2 principles, methods and themes and how they are applied throughout the project
  • Applying and tailoring relevant aspects of PRINCE2 in context

Key differentiators

  • PRINCE2-specific training and testing
  • Training courses included in the price of both certifications
  • Available in self-guided online, virtual classroom and physical classroom formats

Duration of exam

The PRINCE2 Foundation exam contains 60 questions and lasts 60 minutes. The PRINCE2 Practitioner exam contains 68 questions and lasts 150 minutes.

Cost of exam

The PRINCE2 Foundation course and exam starts at $1,116, and the PRINCE2 Practitioner course and exam starts at $1,176. This includes the price of the exam and access to the virtual training courses and resources for 12 months.

IAPM certification

The Certified Agile Project Manager certification is offered by the International Association of Project Managers. The IAPM recommends enrolling in online Agile courses, practicing relevant literature and spending time researching some major topics. Scrum roles, product backlog, team building, conflict management and project environment are some examples of relevant subjects for this certification.

This certification is best suited for managers looking to enhance their skills and grow their knowledge, specifically in Agile project management. IAPM provides access to a web learning platform that you can use to prepare for the exam.


You need to have a basic understanding of Agile, but no specific amount of project experience is required for this certification.

Key skills tested

  • Scrum roles, scrum charts and daily scrum practices
  • Sprint backlog, planning, review and retrospective
  • Team building, motivation and conflict management
  • Product vision and project environment

Key differentiators

  • Covers the fundamentals of agile project management, including different methodologies
  • Web learning platform available for self-guided exam prep
  • Available around the world, exam prices are based on location

Duration of exam

The IAMP exam contains 120 questions and lasts 80 minutes.

Cost of exam

The cost of the exam fluctuates depending on what country you live in and the exchange rates. Right now, it costs about $535 for United States residents.

Certified ScrumMaster (CSM)

Offered by Scrum Alliance, the Certified ScrumMaster certification is an introductory course designed for professionals leading scrum teams who are looking to learn more about the scrum framework and agile project management methodology. This is one of the most well-regarded scrum certifications, which is why it made both of our lists for the best overall Scrum certifications and the best Agile certifications. Participants must complete a minimum of 14 hours of live virtual training spread across two to four days before sitting for the exam.

Those looking for a more advanced scrum certification should check out other offerings from Scrum Alliance, such as the Advanced Certified ScrumMaster and Certified Scrum Professional ScumMaster courses. Scrum Alliance also offers other certifications in product owner and developer tracks.

CSM certification badge
CSM Badge


You need to have a basic understanding of Scrum, but no specific amount of project experience is required for this certification because the training is included.

Key skills tested

  • Fundamentals of Scrum framework and roles
  • Basics of Agile principles and how they apply to Scrum
  • Team leadership and collaboration skills

Key differentiators

  • Focused specifically on Scrum concepts and tactics
  • Suitable for early career project management professionals
  • Includes live virtual training courses as well as exam

Duration of exam

The CSM exam contains 50 questions and lasts 60 minutes.

Cost of exam

The CSM training and exam costs between $405 and $695, with additional exam sitting costing $25 each.

Consider earning a project management certification

While there are many other project management certifications out there, these are some of the best options to choose from because they will help project management professionals Strengthen their skills. Earning a certification is a big commitment, but the benefits often outweigh the drawbacks for most project managers.

Project management roles are becoming increasingly popular, so it’s important for those interested in them to stand out from the crowd. One way to do this is by earning certification, which allows someone to prove their skills and knowledge to a potential employer.

While these certifications may not guarantee an aspiring or seasoned project manager a job, earning one will be a good step in the right direction to take your career to the next level. Whether you’re just starting out in your project management career or are a seasoned project manager looking to add to your resume, there’s a certification out there to fit your needs.

Featured Partners


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3 Quickbase, Inc.

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Big ideas aren’t simple to execute. So we’re here to help you tackle any project, no matter how complex. We’re Quickbase.

Quickbase helps customers see, connect and control complex projects that reshape our world. Whether it’s raising a skyscraper or coordinating vaccine rollouts, the no-code software platform allows business users to custom fit solutions to the way they work – using information from across the systems they already have.

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4 Smartsheet

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Smartsheet is an online work execution platform empowering organizations of all sizes to plan, manage, automate, and report on work. Over 80,000 brands rely on Smartsheet for project and work management.

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5 Resource Guru

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Resource Guru is the fast, flexible way to schedule teams and keep projects on track. Get full visibility of who’s available and who’s overworked, so people and projects succeed in harmony. Assign work, balance workloads, and edit schedules in seconds. Keep your team up-to-date with personal dashboards and daily schedule emails. Analyze utilization rates, clients, and projects for more accurate forecasts and budgets. Trusted by companies including NASA and L’Oreal. Try it free for 30 days!

Learn more about Resource Guru

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Here are 10 executives to watch in 2024 No result found, try new keyword!Greg Adams, chair and CEO of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals, leads the nation's largest integrated health system, with 40 hospitals, nearly 24,000 physicians, more than 215,000 ... Mon, 01 Jan 2024 15:00:00 -0600 en-US text/html Your Health Your Health : NPR

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A popular asthma inhaler is leaving pharmacy shelves. Here's what you need to know

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There's an effective morning-after pill for STIs but it's not clear it works in women

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What parents need to know before giving kids melatonin

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Infertile people, gay and trans couples yearn for progress on lab-made eggs and sperm

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Project Management Methodology PRINCE2™ - in Sri Lanka

Institute of Professional & Skills Development proudly announces the Workshop dates for Project Management Methodology PRINCE2™ Foundation Certification Training in Sri Lanka.

What is PRINCE2?
PRINCE, which stands for Projects in Controlled Environments, is a project management method covering the organization, management and control of projects. PRINCE was first developed by the Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA, now part of the Office of Government Commerce) in 1989 as a UK Government standard for IT project management. Since its introduction, PRINCE has become widely used in both the public and private sectors and is now UK's de facto standard for generic project management, not just IT projects.

The latest version of the method, PRINCE2, was designed to incorporate the requirements of existing customers and to enhance the method towards a generic, best-practice approach for the management of all types of projects.

The design and development work was undertaken by a consortium of project management specialists, and over 150 public and private sector organizations were involved in a Review Panel which provided valuable input and feedback to the consortium. The development work was completed in March 1996 and the PRINCE2 manual ("Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2") is published by TSO.

RINCE2 is a process-based approach for project management providing an easily tailored and scaleable method for the management of all types of projects. Each process is defined with its key inputs and outputs together with the specific objectives to be achieved and activities to be carried out.
The method describes how a project is divided into manageable stages enabling efficient control of resources and regular progress monitoring throughout the project. The various roles and responsibilities for managing a project are fully described and are adaptable to suit the size and complexity of the project, and the skills of the organization. Project planning using PRINCE2 is product-based which means the project plans are focused on delivering results and are not simply about planning when the various activities on the project will be done.

Why get certified

  • Widely recognized Project Management Certification
  • Certification increases your Marketability
  • Approval of your knowledge of Project Management
  • Proof of Professional Achievement
  • Better Job prospects in the recession time

There is no formal requirement for delegates attending this course.
At the end of this course delegates will be able to;

  • Understand the need for project management and how PRINCE2™ meets that requirement
  • Understand the PRINCE2™ process model
  • Prepare project plans using product based planning techniques and undertake risk analysis and management for the project
  • Prepare information for inclusion in a Project Initiation Document
  • Understand techniques for the management of product development, quality control & change control
  • Take the PRINCE2™ Foundation examination paper.
  • Introduction to project management and PRINCE2
  • Principles, themes and processes
  • Business Case
  • Organization
  • Quality Plans
  • Risk Change
  • Progress
  • Processes
  • Exam review
  • Tailoring PRINCE2 to the environment

Benefits to you by attending
Change has become a way of life for organizations that need to remain effective and competitive in order to thrive. PRINCE2® embodies many years of "Best Practice" in Project Management. It has recently been updated to the 2009 version and the knowledge contained will ensure that you are provided with a modern, flexible, adaptable, and successful approach to suit all types of projects in accordance with PRINCE2® Methodology.

There are two levels to the qualification:
The Foundation Level is the first qualification that is required to become a PRINCE2® Practitioner. This level is aiming to measure whether a candidate could act as an informed member of a project management team on a Project using the PRINCE2® method, within an environment supporting PRINCE2®. To this end they need to show they understand the principles and terminology of the method.

The Practitioner Level Candidates must pass the Foundation exam before proceeding to the Practitioner level. The Practitioner Level aims to measure whether the candidate is able to apply PRINCE2® methods to the running and managing of a Project. They need to show that they are able to fine tune PRINCE2® to different project circumstances and understand the relationship between processes, components and techniques.

Our success
We @ IPSD are proud to announce its delegates achieving 100% success @ PRINCE2 Foundation Exam
The aim of conducting Project Management methodology - PRINCE2 Project Management training programme to be conducted in Sri Lanka is to prepare the participants with the necessary knowledge and skills leading to globally recognized PRINCE2 Foundation Certification. For further details on how you could become a PRINCE2 Foundation Certified, call LAKSHITHA REGINALD, on 077 3727025.

This Project Management methodology - PRINCE2 Project Management course will be held at the Park Premier, Excel World, organized by INSTITUTE OF PROFESSIONAL & SKILLS DEVELOPMENT [PRIVATE] LTD., from November 19 to 21.

Course will conducted by MR. N. NIRMALAN - Master of Project Management - Australia, REGISTERED PRINCE2® PRACTITIONER, BSc., CISA, CITP, MCS, ITIL(F).

Wed, 04 May 2022 13:50:00 -0500 text/html
Buying Private Health Insurance

If your employer doesn’t offer you health insurance as part of an employee benefits program, you may be looking at purchasing your own health insurance through a private health insurance company. It is common to be concerned about how much it will cost to purchase health insurance for yourself. However, there are various options and prices available to you based on the level of coverage that you need.

Key Takeaways

  • You may need to purchase individual healthcare coverage if you just turned 26 years old, are unemployed or self-employed, work part time, are starting a business that will have employees, or have recently retired.
  • If you do not have the option of enrolling in an employer-sponsored health insurance plan, a good source for gaining insurance coverage is through the Health Insurance Marketplace that was created in 2014 by the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
  • If you are at least age 65 or disabled, you can enroll in Medicare, with the option to add additional coverage through a private Medigap or Medicare Advantage plan.

How Buying Private Health Insurance Works

A premium is the amount of money that an individual or business pays to an insurance company for coverage. Health insurance premiums are typically paid monthly. Employers that offer an employer-sponsored health insurance plan typically cover part of the insurance premiums. If you need to insure yourself, you’ll be paying the full cost of the premiums.

When purchasing your own insurance, the process is more complicated than simply selecting a company plan and having the premium payments come straight out of your paycheck every month. Here are some tips to help guide you through the process of purchasing your own health insurance.

Some Americans get insurance by enrolling in a group health insurance plan through their employers. Medicare also provides healthcare coverage to people 65 years or older and the disabled, and Medicaid has coverage for low-income Americans.

Medicare is a federal health insurance program for people who are age 65 or older. Certain young people with disabilities and people with end-stage renal disease may also qualify for Medicare. Medicaid is a public assistance healthcare program for low-income Americans regardless of their age.

If your company does not offer an employer-sponsored plan, and if you are not eligible for Medicare or Medicaid, individuals and families have the option of purchasing insurance policies directly from private insurance companies or through the Health Insurance Marketplace.

Scenarios When You Might Need Private Health Insurance

There are certain circumstances that make it more likely that you will need to purchase your own health insurance plan, including:

A Young Adult 26 Years of Age or Older

Under provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010, young people can be covered as dependents by their parents’ health insurance policy until they turn 26 years old. After that, they must seek out their own insurance policy.


If you lose your job, you may be eligible to maintain coverage through your employer’s health insurance plan for a period of time through a program called the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA). COBRA allows eligible employees and their dependents the option to continue health insurance coverage at their own expense. 

While coverage through COBRA can be maintained for up to 36 months (under certain circumstances), the cost of enrolling in COBRA is very high. This is because the formerly employed person pays the entire cost of the insurance. Typically, employers pay a portion of healthcare premiums on behalf of their employees.

A Part-Time Employee

Part-time jobs rarely offer health benefits. A part-time job is any position that requires employees to work a lower number of hours than would be considered full time by their employer, or 40 hours per week. If you work part time, you usually must enroll in your own health insurance.


A self-employed person may work as a freelancer or own a business. Some self-employed people can get health insurance through a spouse’s plan. If not, they must provide their own health insurance.

A Business Owner Who Has Employees

If you start a business and you have employees, you might be required to offer them health insurance. Even if it’s not required, you might decide to offer health insurance to be a competitive employer that can attract qualified job candidates. In this situation, you will be required to purchase a business health insurance plan, also known as a group plan.

If You Retire (or Your Spouse/Parent Retires)

When you retire, you will likely no longer be eligible for employer-sponsored health insurance. If you are under age 65 and not disabled, you will need to purchase individual private health insurance until you turn 65 and can apply for Medicare. Many retirees choose to purchase private Medigap or Medicare Advantage plans in addition to Medicare as a way of guaranteeing more comprehensive coverage. Some retired people may also decide to completely replace Medicare coverage with a private Medicare Advantage plan.

It is important to note that Medicare, Medigap, and Medicare Advantage plans are only for the individual—your spouse, partner, and any dependents cannot be insured through your Medicare plan. This means that if your family was previously insured through your employer’s plan, and you retire, your family members may need to enroll in individual insurance plans.

Dropped by Your Existing Insurer

Although the ACA prevents insurers from canceling your coverage—or denying you coverage due to a preexisting condition or because you made a mistake on your application—there are other circumstances when your coverage may be canceled. It’s also possible that your insurance may become so expensive that you can’t afford it.

Why You Should Purchase Health Insurance

If you find yourself in one of the above situations and lack health insurance coverage, it’s important to enroll in an individual plan as soon as possible. (The fine for failing to obtain coverage was canceled in 2019.)

Even though you’re not required to have insurance, you cannot predict when an accident will occur that will require medical attention. Even a minor broken bone can have major financial consequences if you’re uninsured.

If you purchase insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace, you may be eligible for income-based premium tax credits or cost-sharing reductions. The marketplace is a platform that offers insurance plans to individuals, families, and small businesses.

The ACA established the marketplace as a means to achieve maximum compliance with the mandate that all Americans be enrolled in health insurance. Many states offer their own marketplaces, while the federal government manages an exchange open to residents of other states.

While you may not be able to afford the same kind of plan that an employer would offer you, any amount of coverage is more advantageous than none. In the event of a major accident or a long-term illness, you will be prepared.

Choosing the Best Insurance Plan for You

There are several different kinds of health insurance plans, and each of these plans has a number of unique features.

Health Maintenance Organization (HMO)

A health maintenance organization (HMO) is a company with an organizational structure that allows them to provide insurance coverage for their subscribers through a specific network of healthcare providers.

Typical HMO features include paying for insurance coverage for a monthly or annual fee. Premiums tend to be lower for HMOs because health providers have patients directed at them, but the disadvantage is that subscribers are limited to accessing a network of doctors and other healthcare providers who are contracted with the HMO.

Preferred Provider Organization (PPO)

A preferred provider organization (PPO) is a type of insurance plan in which medical professionals and facilities provide services to subscribed clients at reduced rates. Healthcare providers that are part of this network are called preferred providers or in-network providers. 

Subscribers of a PPO plan have the option of seeing healthcare providers outside of this network of providers (out-of-network providers), but the rates for seeing these providers are more expensive.

Exclusive Provider Organization (EPO)

An exclusive provider organization (EPO) is a hybrid of HMO and PPO plans. With an EPO plan, you can only receive services from providers within a certain network. However, exceptions can be made for emergency care.

Another characteristic of an EPO plan is that you may be required to choose a primary care physician (PCP). This is a general practitioner who will provide preventive care and treat you for minor illnesses. In addition, with an EMO plan, you usually do not need to get a referral from your PCP to see a specialist physician.

High-Deductible Health Plan (HDHP)

A high-deductible health plan (HDHP) has a couple of key characteristics. As its name implies, it has a higher annual deductible than other insurance plans. A deductible is the portion of an insurance claim that the subscriber covers themselves. HDHPs typically have lower monthly premiums.

This type of plan is ideal for young or generally healthy people who don’t expect to demand healthcare services unless they experience a medical emergency or an unexpected accident.

The last defining feature of a high-deductible health plan is that it offers access to a tax-advantaged Health Savings Account (HSA).

HSA subscribers can contribute funds that can later be used for medical costs that their HDHP doesn’t cover. The advantage of these accounts is that the funds are not subject to federal income taxes at the time of the deposit.

Consumer-Driven Health Plan (CHDP)

Consumer-driven health plans (CDHPs) are a type of HDHP. A portion of services that subscribers receive is paid for with pretax dollars. Like other HDHPs, CDHPs have higher annual deductibles than other health insurance plans, but the subscriber pays lower premiums each month.

Point-of-Service (POS) Plan

A point-of-service (POS) plan provides different benefits to subscribers based on whether or not they use preferred providers (in-network providers) or providers outside of the preferred network (out-of-network providers). A POS plan includes features of both HMO and PPO plans.

Short-Term Insurance Policy

A short-term insurance policy covers any gap that you might experience in coverage if, for example, you change jobs and your new company plan doesn’t kick in immediately.

It typically lasts for three months. Term lengths vary by state, and in some U.S. states, you may be eligible for a short-term plan for up to 12 months.

Short-term health insurance is also called temporary health insurance or term health insurance. It can be useful if you’re changing jobs, waiting to become eligible for Medicare coverage, or waiting out the designated open enrollment period for a plan.

Under a short-term insurance plan, your spouse and other eligible dependents may also be covered. However, one important caveat of a short-term insurance plan is that in some cases, preexisting conditions can disqualify you from coverage. The definition of a preexisting condition varies depending on the state where you live, but it is usually defined as something you have been diagnosed with or received treatment for within the last two to five years.

Catastrophic Coverage

Catastrophic health insurance is a type of insurance plan that is typically only available to adults ages 30 or younger. To qualify, you must receive a hardship exemption from the government. Catastrophic health insurance typically has lower premiums than other health insurance plans.

These types of plans are intended for people who cannot afford to spend much money every month on insurance premiums but don’t want to be without insurance in the event of a serious accident or illness.

While catastrophic health insurance plans may have low monthly premiums, they typically have the highest possible deductibles.

Choosing a Deductible

Once you’ve decided on the type of plan that is best for you, you’ll need to determine how much you can afford to pay as a deductible. This is the predetermined amount that you pay for covered healthcare services before your insurance plan starts to pay.

What can you afford to pay in out-of-pocket medical expenses each year? With most health insurance plans, the higher your deductible is, the lower your monthly premium will be. If your monthly cash flow is low, you might have to opt for a higher deductible.

Another key consideration when selecting an insurance plan is the plan’s out-of-pocket maximum. After you’ve spent this amount on deductibles and medical services through co-payments and co-insurance, your health plan will pay the entire cost of covered benefits.

How Much Does Private Health Insurance Cost?

While many people are scared by the prospect of purchasing their own insurance versus enrolling in an employer-sponsored plan, some studies have shown that it can end up being more affordable than employer-sponsored plans.

A study from the Kaiser Family Foundation found that the average annual premium for an employer-sponsored insurance plan for individual coverage in 2023 was $8,435 per year. This total increases to $23,968 per year for family coverage.

In addition, if you end up purchasing coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace, you may qualify for a Cost-Sharing Reduction subsidy and Advanced Premium Tax Credits. These can lower your premium payment amounts, your deductible, and any co-payments and co-insurance for which you are responsible.

Where to Go to Buy Private Health Insurance

You have several options when it comes to buying private health insurance.

If you are (or are soon to be) retired, you can begin on the Medicare website. It is recommended that you see what the standard Medicare plan covers and then look at options for ways to supplement Medicare through Medigap and Medicare Advantage policies.

When considering Medigap or Medicare Advantage coverage, it’s important to understand how both work types of coverage work in conjunction with standard Medicare coverage.

As a result of the ACA, the Health Insurance Marketplace was created in 2014. You can visit the Health Insurance Marketplace website to find out more about the options for health insurance coverage that are available where you live. You can also determine if you qualify for any subsidy and apply for it.

The marketplace has a specific open enrollment period. Typically, it is from Nov. 1 to Dec. 15 every year, although various events may lead to the open enrollment period being extended or reopened.

The website includes information about private plans that are available for purchase outside of the marketplace. However, if you purchase a plan outside of the marketplace, whether during open enrollment or not, then you will not be eligible for any subsidies available under the ACA.

Under certain circumstances, an individual may be eligible to purchase a healthcare plan through the exchange even if it is outside of the specified open enrollment period. This is called a Special Enrollment Period. You may be eligible for a Special Enrollment Period if you experience a household change, including getting married or divorced, having or adopting a child, a death in your family, moving, losing your health insurance, being in a national catastrophe, or experiencing a disability.

The American Rescue Plan of 2021 increased subsidies for ACA plans for lower-income Americans and broadened subsidies to include some subsidies at higher income levels.

Private Health Insurance Companies

You can visit the websites of major health insurance companies in your geographic region and browse available options based on the type of coverage that you prefer and the deductible that you can afford to pay.

The types of plans available and the premiums will vary based on the region where you live and your age. It’s important to note that the plan price quoted on the website is the lowest available price for that plan and assumes that you are in excellent health. You won’t know what you’ll really pay per month until you apply and provide the insurance company with your medical history.

Pricing and the type of coverage can vary significantly based on the health insurance company. Because of this, it can be difficult to truly compare the plans to determine which company has the best combination of rates and coverage. It can be a good idea to identify which plans offer the most of the features that you require and are within your price range, then to read consumer reviews of those plans.

If you are choosing a family plan or are an employer who is choosing a plan that you’ll provide to your employees, then you’ll also want to consider the needs of others who will be covered under the plan.

Key Factors for Choosing a Plan

Health insurance plans offer a variety of different features. While it may be hard to find a plan that offers everything you desire, consider which of the following features are the most medically and financially necessary. Here are some questions to consider when you are researching plans:

  • Does the plan offer prescription drug coverage? Does it only cover generic versions of prescription drugs? What is the co-payment (also referred to as the co-pay) on generics and name-brand drugs? Check the medicines you’re already taking, if any.
  • What is the office visit co-payment, and does the plan have instituted a maximum number of office visits that it will cover per year?
  • What is the co-payment for specialized services, such as X-rays, lab tests, and surgery? How about for an emergency room visit?
  • Do you want a plan that allows you to add vision and dental coverage?
  • Do you need pregnancy benefits?
  • Do you already have a doctor who you like? If so, you might want to find a plan that includes your doctor in its insurance company’s provider network.
  • Do lifetime and annual maximum benefits apply? The ACA effectively eliminated lifetime and annual maximums for essential medical services, but this does not include dental and vision coverage, for example.
  • Does the plan offer free or discounted services for preventive care, such as an annual checkup? Most plans under the ACA provide free coverage for most preventive care services. Short-term insurance plans and catastrophic coverage may not.
  • Does the plan cover specialty services such as physical therapy, chiropractic, and acupuncture visits?
  • What hospitals are included in the network?
  • For PPOs, what is the cost for out-of-network services, should you want or need them? Can you afford this?

When Can I Buy Private Health Insurance?

Most types of health insurance have an open enrollment period during which you can sign up for private health insurance. This is true whether you buy insurance via the Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance exchange in your state, sign up directly through the insurer, enroll in the plan that your employer offers, or sign up for Medicare.

Certain life events can trigger a special enrollment period, which will allow you to change your health insurance coverage outside of the normal enrollment period. These events include getting married or divorced, having a baby, losing your job-based health insurance, or moving out of your health plan’s service area.

What Does Private Health Insurance Cost?

In 2023, the average national cost for health insurance per year was $8,435 for single coverage and $23,968 for family coverage. However, this cost can vary considerably depending on your healthcare needs, the state where you live, and what level of coverage you require.

Where Can I Buy Private Health Insurance?

A good place to start looking for coverage is the Health Insurance Marketplace created in 2014 by the ACA. On the marketplace for your state, you can look through the details of private health insurance plans and compare the cost and benefits of each. If your state does not have its own marketplace, use

The Bottom Line

Getting your own health insurance policy is not as easy as signing up for an employer’s plan, but at least you have control over the plan that you get. Once you figure out what you need and become familiar with the terminology used to describe health insurance plans, your research will become easier. With the number of options available, you can probably find a plan that meets both your needs and your budget.

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