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Where can I purchase individual health coverage?

Start your shopping at a Web site such as EHealthInsurance.com - but keep in mind that the rates you'll be quoted apply to only the healthiest applicants. That's why an independent insurance agent can be helpful in finding the best insurer (and deal) for your circumstances. Go to the Web site of the National Association of Health Underwriters for a directory of such agents.

To keep your premiums affordable, your best bet may be a high-deductible insurance plan coupled with a Health Savings Account (HSA). While you'll be on the hook for, say, the first $5,000 in expenses annually, you'll be protected from big-ticket disasters.

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