It is well known, everywhere, that parenting is not easy. It is also well known that purchasing vision insurance can be a daunting task. Because of this, when it comes to looking for children’s vision insurance, many parents don’t know where to start.
Luckily, you’re in the right place. Here’s the basics about children’s vision insurance, like what age vision coverage is needed, the cost of coverage, and whether it’s possible to get vision insurance just for your child. so grab a pen and paper, fill your cup of coffee and let’s get to it.
At what age should my child’s vision be checked?
Within the first year, your baby should be examined three times to assess vision and eye development. During regular well-child visits, a pediatrician will perform the evaluation by shining a light into the child’s eyes to check pupillary response and eye alignment. if any problems are detected, you will be referred to an eye health professional who specializes in pediatrics.
the infantsee program offered through the american optometric association also provides free eye exams for children 6-12 months of age. The program allows you to find a local participating pediatric optometrist and schedule an eye exam for your child at no cost.
After the first year, your child typically won’t need another eye exam until age 3 and will have one every year thereafter until age 6, then every two years thereafter. If your child has a family history of pediatric vision problems, or if you notice any unusual or abnormal behavior in your child’s vision, you should contact your pediatrician. in some cases, more frequent eye exams may be required.
see related: what should my child expect at his first eye exam?
When should I have vision insurance for my children?
As mentioned above, eye exams usually start at age 3, so your child should have vision coverage by then.
The level of coverage varies from plan to plan, but the main services covered by children’s vision insurance include:
lenses and frames
selected extras like blue light and scratch-resistant lens coatings
can i get vision insurance just for my child?
yes, there are options for only your child to be insured through public and private insurance plans.
Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) is available to children who meet the standards set by each individual state. If your child is eligible for chip coverage, you won’t have to purchase any additional insurance for your child. the chip will cover dental and vision care, emergency services, immunizations, routine checkups and more.
An advantage of the chip is that you don’t have to wait for registration to open; You can apply at any time to find out if your child meets the state requirements.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) expands the affordability and coverage of children’s health insurance. For those with insurance through the ACA, vision coverage for your children is already included in your benefit plan. for plans to comply with this, they must provide pediatric coverage for dental and vision services.
Both of these options are provided at the state or federal level and are tailored to households earning less than a certain annual income, so not all families will be eligible. plans are also included in health insurance with vision services included, but are not exclusively vision insurance coverage.
If your household income makes you ineligible for federal insurance plans, or if you prefer vision benefits only, there are still options for you. Some options for your child’s private vision insurance include:
united health care
Each of these vision insurance providers has their own set of benefits, so we recommend researching them before making a decision.
how much does vision insurance cost for children?
The amount you pay for your child’s vision insurance depends solely on the plan you choose.
As mentioned above, chip coverage and eligibility are determined by each state. Typically, the enrollment fee for coverage ranges from $0 to $50, with copays from $3 to $25, depending on household income. For a more accurate estimate, request your child’s chip in your specific state.
The cost of insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act depends on a few factors, such as the level of coverage you choose and your annual income. sign up for coverage here to find out how much vision coverage would cost for your child.
unitedhealthcare has individual vision coverage for as little as $16 per month, with $10 copays and a $150 credit for frames or contacts.
davis vision is similarly priced with individual vision fetching less than $14 per month. in-network copays are $10 and there is a $130 allowance for eyeglass frames.
Human vision coverage is not offered everywhere, so please check your location for availability. they have a $15 per month plan with a $15 copay and a $150 allowance for glasses or contacts.
vsp has a very large network, which makes them an attractive option because the larger the network, the more options you have. They offer plans starting at $13 per month, but their standard plan is $17 per month with a $15 copay and a $170 credit toward your preferred method of vision correction.
It’s important to remember that coverage prices may vary based on annual household income, location, and other factors. Doing extensive research on all of your vision insurance options can be tedious and sometimes confusing, but it’s definitely worth the effort.
Finding the right vision insurance coverage will take the stress out of paying out of pocket and put your child on the right path to happy, healthy vision.
Is it time for your little one to get an eye exam? Schedule an appointment with a pediatric ophthalmologist near you.
page published on Monday, April 27, 2020
page updated on Wednesday, March 16, 2022