Medical Cost Sharing - How it Works in generalMedical cost sharing is an affordable way to take care of unforseen medical expenses. It is becoming popular due to the ACA (Obamacare) mandate that requires individuals to purchase health insurance. Members of certain health care cost sharing ministries are exempt from this requirement under the religious exemption outlined in sections 1501 and 5000A of the ACA. Many thousands are finding they save money and have better health care options when participating in such a community.
Members of these "health sharing" groups commit to pay a certain amount each month towards any medical expenses that members in their group may have. The organizations themselves provide tools to help streamline their members' donations and make sure they make it to other members who are in need that month. Members are generally required to examine costs prior to making health care decisions which keeps costs low. Some ministries help negotiate lower health care costs for their membership with doctors and hospitals etc. These savings are passed on to their members. Members of medical cost sharing ministries are not tied into any specific network of doctors or hospitals. Health sharing members have greater autonomy in making decisions relative to their own health care.
In general the differences between health sharing groups and insurance companies can be likened to the difference between a bank and a credit union. Credit unions are unions of members who have something in common. They pool money to extend credit to their members. Banks service the public at large and engage in profit making ventures. They follow different rules and are beholden to shareholders. Both types of entities make loans and provide savings accounts.
Health sharing ministries admit new members that share similar beliefs. Many require that the applicants be committed to a healthy lifestyle and not engage in detrimental activities such as smoking. They can prohibit or condition membership based on the health of an applicant. However these ministries are not allowed to drop any members if they become sick or develop costly medical conditions. Because the members of medical cost sharing communities are generally more health conscious and pro-active than the public at large, these organizations have lower health costs and pass the savings on to their members.
To give some specifics, we recommend joining Liberty HealthShare. Our program options range from as low as $107 a month for an individual under 30 to $449 for a family on the most comprehensive program, where our members share in 100% of eligible medical costs up to $1,000,000 per incident. The annual unshared amount for an individual is only $500, $1000 for a couple and $1500 for a family.
In summary, health care cost sharing groups are an increasingly popular way to pay for unforeseen medical costs. They present many advantages to individuals and families who share similar religious beliefs. They exist solely for the benefit of their membership. They provide a legal method to 'opt-out' of the ACA (Obamacare). Using modern technology, they provide tools to help their members share medical costs on a monthly basis without any extra hassle. Medical cost sharing groups help their members pay unexpected medical cost. Consider joining us to take charge of your health care!