Consider what could happen if you suddenly came down with a severe illness or suffered a catastrophic accident. Within a matter of days you could incur hospital and doctors’ bills in the tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands of dollars. Without insurance your home could be taken from you, your bank account could be drained, and any other assets you own could be wiped away – all in the blink of an eye.And yet, for over 50% of the people in West Virginia the cost of health insurance is reported to be a severe financial hardship and fully 16% of the people of West Virginia can’t afford health insurance at all.While we wait for relief it is vital that we find ways of reducing the cost of health insurance ourselves. Purchasing health insurance online is, perhaps, part of the answer since online health insurance generally costs less than health insurance purchased from a brick and mortar business. But simply jumping online with no clear idea of how to lower the cost of health insurance will not solve the problem. We need something more. We need ways of reducing costs initially so that the additional savings we get from purchasing our insurance online can have a real meaning.Fortunately there are steps that you can take that will help reduce the cost of your health insurance even before you get online.For example, start by eating a healthy diet and getting some exercise. Yes, this means cutting way, way down on fast food and fried foods and it means eating more fruits and vegetables and it means walking or riding a bike three or four times a week.It also means that you will have to stop smoking and using chew if you are serious about getting cheap health insurance online or anywhere else in West Virginia.Your weight is also a factor when looking for cheap health insurance. A portion of your health insurance premium is based on your BMI, or Body Mass Index. The less your BMI the lower your health insurance premium each month. The one ray of sunshine is that if you are able to lose even a few pounds it’s possible that you could move down on the insurance company’s BMI chart – and if you move down even one level you could, potentially, save hundreds of dollars each year on your health insurance.Join a group health plan. A group health plan may not be as concerned about smoking and BMI as an individual health plan. If your place of work doesn’t offer group health insurance consider any groups, clubs, organizations or associations that you or any member of your family or any friends belong to. If you find a club or organization that offers its members group health consider it seriously.Join an HMO or a PPO. These are forms of group health insurance that are somewhat less expensive than many other health insurance plans, but HMOs especially limit the doctors that you can see, so unless your current doctor is a member of the HMO that you join, there’s a very good chance you will need to change doctors.Don’t participate in extreme sports and don’t drive a fast, sporty car.If you have other forms of insurance it can pay you to consolidate all of your insurance with the same company. In this way you will qualify for a Multi-Policy Discount.Have your premiums automatically deducted from your checking account each month. The money your company saves on billing you will be passed along to you.Can you afford to increase your co-payment each time you visit your doctor? If you can afford a 50% co-pay you’ll save a bundle on premiums each month. This plan works best for people who do not see their doctor on a regular basis.Finally, can you afford to increase your deductible? If you can increase your deductible then you will lower your cost of health insurance immediately. However, don’t agree to pay more of a deductible each year than you can actually afford to pay.And this brings us to our final step: buying our health insurance policy online. Yes, it is true that you can get cheap health insurance online in West Virginia, but don’t get lazy and stop after looking at just one health insurance price comparison website.If you are truly serious about finding the cheapest health insurance you can, then you must compare prices on at least 3 different websites. And you must take what you’ve learned in this article and fill out the forms on all three website EXACTLY the same.Only in this way can you compare the same health insurance on all three sites – and making a true comparison is the only way to really find the cheapest health insurance.Once you’ve made all of your comparisons then the only thing that’s left is to review the prices you found and choose the lowest one. By doing your homework and by making your comparisons on a minimum of 3 different websites, you can feel confident that you now know exactly how to get cheap health insurance online in West Virginia and save as much money each month as you possibly can.