The best way to save money and time is to avoid getting sick in the first place. Too often, we neglect the screenings and appointments that could keep us healthier in the long run, but an electronic medical record system can provide alerts to medical professionals that you're in need of a checkup. Basic information on your medical record -- age, family history and gender -- can be compared against a database of best practices and governmental guidelines, and the system will alert the doctor that you should receive a Pap smear or a flu shot, for example. Some systems may even be able to send you an e-mail reminding you to schedule the appointment. And thanks to the Affordable Care Act, such preventive care is covered at no out-of-pocket costs under most health insurance plans.
To read more about the Affordable Care Act and other changes in the world of health insurance, see the links on the next page.