The month of December is the last one of the year for a reason; a time to reflect on the year that was before a new one begins.

All will become new on Jan. 1, including a reset of your health insurance, and what some medical treatments may cost.

According to St. Cloud Regional Medical Center, here’s some tips to look at in your health insurance and spending for the year.

Check to see if you’ve met your deductible. Each insurance plan has an amount of expenses you must pay for out of pocket until your plan begins paying most or all of your medical care costs. Did you meet it? When? If not, were you close?

Review your Flex Spending Account, if you have one. This money goes from your paycheck to this account pre-tax, so if there’s anything left at the end of the year, the IRS requires the funds be spent … or forfeited (“Use it or Lose it).

Schedule some needed appointments, procedures or screenings. If your deductible is met or there’s FSA funds, use them in December as medical appointments will become expensive again in January when accounts are zeroed out and deductibles must be met again. Making appointments now potentially can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

Here’s some ways to use available insurance benefits:
Annual physicals, immunizations (Flu shots, anyone?), screenings (for cancers, pap smear, mammogram, colonoscopy, etc.), or in bigger cases, small-grade surgeries, endoscopy or sleep studies.

Enjoy your holiday season with family and friends, and reflect on your year, and your health care… it could bring you great health, and great savings!