Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Market Decline Will Lead To Pension Collapse, USD Devaluation, And NWO - Raymond_Matison
2.Uber’s Nightmare Has Just Started - Stephen_McBride
3.Stock Market Crash Black Swan Event Set Up Sept 12th? - Brad_Gudgeon
4.GDow Stock Market Trend Forecast Update - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Gold Significant Correction Has Started - Clive_Maund
6.British Pound GBP vs Brexit Chaos Timeline - Nadeem_Walayat
7.Cameco Crash, Uranium Sector Won’t Catch a break - Richard_Mills
8.Recession 2020 Forecast : The New Risks & New Profits Of A Grand Experiment - Dan_Amerman
9.Gold When Global Insanity Prevails - Michael Ballanger
10.UK General Election Forecast 2019 - Betting Market Odds - Nadeem_Walayat
Last 7 days
Tory Seats Forecast 2019 General Election Based on UK House Prices Momentum Analysis - 9th Dec 19
Top Tory Marginal Seats at Risk of Loss to Labour and Lib Dems - Election 2019 - 9th Dec 19
UK House Prices Momentum Tory Seats Forecast General Election 2019 - 8th Dec 19
Why Labour is Set to Lose Sheffield Seats at General Election 2019 - 8th Dec 19
Gold and Silver Opportunity Here Is As Good As It Gets - 8th Dec 19
High Yield Bond and Transports Signal Gold Buy Signal - 8th Dec 19
Gold & Silver Stocks Belie CoT Caution - 8th Dec 19
Will Labour Government Spending Bankrupt Britain? UK Debt and Deficits - 7th Dec 19
Lib Dem Fake Tory Election Leaflets - Sheffield Hallam General Election 2019 - 7th Dec 19
You Should Be Buying Gold Stocks Now - 6th Dec 19
The End of Apple Has Begun - 6th Dec 19
How Much Crude Oil Do You Unknowingly Eat? - 6th Dec 19
Labour vs Tory Manifesto Voter Bribes Impact on UK General Election Forecast - 6th Dec 19
Gold Price Forecast – Has the Recovery Finished? - 6th Dec 19
Precious Metals Ratio Charts - 6th Dec 19
Climate Emergency vs Labour Tree Felling Councils Reality - Sheffield General Election 2019 - 6th Dec 19
What Fake UK Unemployment Statistics Predict for General Election Result 2019 - 6th Dec 19
What UK CPI, RPI and REAL INFLATION Predict for General Election Result 2019 - 5th Dec 19
Supply Crunch Coming as Silver Miners Scale Back - 5th Dec 19
Gold Will Not Surpass Its 1980 Peak - 5th Dec 19
UK House Prices Most Accurate Predictor of UK General Elections - 2019 - 5th Dec 19
7 Year Cycles Can Be Powerful And Gold Just Started One - 5th Dec 19
Lib Dems Winning Election Leaflets War Against Labour - Sheffield Hallam 2019 - 5th Dec 19
Do you like to venture out? Test yourself and see what we propose for you - 5th Dec 19
Great Ways To Make Money Over Time - 5th Dec 19
Calculating Your Personal Cost If Stock, Bond and House Prices Return To Average - 4th Dec 19
Will Labour Government Plant More Tree's than Council's Like Sheffield Fell? - 4th Dec 19
What the UK Economy GDP Growth Rate Predicts for General Election 2019 - 4th Dec 19
Gold, Silver and Stock Market Big Picture: Seat Belts Tightened - 4th Dec 19
Online Presence: What You Need to Know About What Others Know About You - 4th Dec 19
New Company Tip: How To Turn Prospects into Customers with CRM Tech - 4th Dec 19
About To Relive The 2007 US Housing Market Real Estate Crash Again? - 3rd Dec 19
How Far Will Gold Reach Before the Upcoming Reversal? - 3rd Dec 19
Is The Current Stock Market Rally A True Valuation Rally or Euphoria? - 3rd Dec 19
Why Shale Oil Not Viable at $45WTI Anymore, OPEC Can Dictate Price Again - 3rd Dec 19
Lib Dem Election Dodgy Leaflets - Sheffield Hallam Battle General Election 2019 - 3rd Dec 19
Land Rover Discovery Sport Brake Pads Uneven Wear Dash Warning Message at 2mm Mark - 3rd Dec 19
The Rise and Evolution of Bitcoin - 3rd Dec 19
Virtual games and sport, which has one related to the other - 3rd Dec 19
The Narrative About Gold is Changing Again - 2nd Dec 19
Stock Market Liquidity & Volume Diminish – What Next? - 2nd Dec 19
A Complete Guide To Finding The Best CFD Broker - 2nd Dec 19
See You On The Dark Side Of The Moon - 2nd Dec 19
Will Lib Dems Win Sheffield Hallam From Labour? General Election 2019 - 2nd Dec 19
Stock Market Where Are We?  - 1st Dec 19
Will Labour's Insane Manifesto Spending Plans Bankrupt Britain? - 1st Dec 19
Labour vs Tory Manifesto Debt Fuelled Voter Bribes Impact on UK General Election - 30th Nov 19
Growing Inequality Unrest Threatens Mining Industry - 30th Nov 19
Conspiracy Theories Are Killing This Nation - 30th Nov 19
How to Clip a Budgies / Parakeets Wings, Cut / Trim Bird's Flight Feathers - 30th Nov 19
Hidden Failure of SIFI Banks - 29th Nov 19
Use the “Ferrari Pattern” to Predictably Make 431% with IPOs - 29th Nov 19
Tax-Loss Selling Drives Down Gold and Silver Junior Stock Prices - 29th Nov 19
We Are on the Brink of the Second Great Depression - 29th Nov 19
How to Spot REAL Amazon Black Friday Bargains and Avoid FAKE Sales - 29th Nov 19

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

UK House prices predicting general election result

Tackling Higher US Healthcare Costs

Personal_Finance / Healthcare Sector May 25, 2017 - 06:42 PM GMT

By: Rodney_Johnson

Personal_Finance In 2015, I thought my healthcare renewal statement was wrong.

The premium for my shrinking family of three (two adults and one child) was increasing by more than 30%, to $1,454 per month. My earnings place me out of the subsidy bracket, so these are real dollars out of our budget.

There were plenty of insurance companies to choose from. Shrinking availability was not a problem. It was just breathtakingly expensive.


Or so I thought.

In 2016, my premium jumped to $1,733 per month.

The galling part is that I had no control. I’d kept tabs for years. The insurance companies had never paid total reimbursements anywhere close to the premiums we’d paid, and our deductibles climbed even as our premiums shot higher.

This is not how insurance is supposed to work.

Insurance is a hedge against something unexpected happening.

The current system is glorified cost-sharing with a lot of middlemen.

With true insurance, I’d pay for small or ordinary medical costs like a broken arm or asthma treatments, and I’d pay for scheduled surgeries with savings or a payment plan. But big things, like car accidents or cancer, would be covered.

That sort of coverage isn’t possible today. Even if the proposed American Health Care Act allows it, I’m not sure how many insurance companies would offer such stripped down service.

I don’t claim to know how to fix the national problem.

Caring for everyone as we age will be expensive, but no one (including me) wants to ration care or tell doctors they simply earn too much compared to their peers in other countries.

But that doesn’t mean I sat still when I got my premium renewal notice last year.

I searched for alternatives… and I found them.

The Affordable Care Act includes a carve-out for health-sharing arrangements that existed before 2000. These organizations tend to have a religious component and work like mutual benefit societies from a bygone era.

I investigated several before choosing Christian Healthcare Ministries (CHM, www.chministries.org). There’s also Medi-Share and Samaritan Ministries, among others. Each one operates a bit differently, which is why I chose CHM. But they each have the same basic principles.

I contribute $150 each month per person, or $450. That’s $1,283 less than my cost would have been in the traditional market. It adds up to $15,396 per year.

The organizations ask that you affirm your faith, and that you live a responsible life. It’s not that you need to live a life of austerity or denial. You can still have one too many at the local barbeque from time to time, or ski the black diamond runs.

What you can’t do is expect your fellow members to pay for things outside the bounds. If you have an accident while driving under the influence, it’s not covered. If you get addicted to illegal drugs, it’s not covered.

In short, these organizations give you the opportunity to exchange responsible behavior for lower-cost healthcare.

This is not insurance. It’s health cost sharing. It sounds like semantics, but once you get into the details the difference becomes clear. Even though CHM mailed me a card, there’s nothing to show a doctor or hospital.

When we visit the doctor, we say one thing: “Self-insured.”

Last fall, while away at college, my daughter went to the hospital. She was short of breath due to an allergic reaction. She called from the waiting room. I told her to do everything necessary to get the care she needed, and, when it came time to settle up, to tell them she’s self-insured and to give them my contact information.

She left without paying a nickel, and then I waited for the bill.

Five weeks later, I received her statement. The hospital had reduced her bill by 71%.

The CHM gold plan we have covers costs outside of tests and transportation, with a $500 deductible per condition. We pay for our routine doctor visits.

The plan includes a prescription drug benefit, but I’ve found that GoodRx, a free app that anyone can use, is better. I recently filled a prescription that would have been $39, but GoodRx directed me to a large chain grocery store where my coupon provided by them brought the cost down to $8.

Clearly this approach won’t work for everyone. I’d imagine there are pitfalls to these programs that will come up as time goes on. But, so far, it seems to be working just like insurance used to work.

And the basic tenets seem solid enough to help all of us achieve lower costs.

As a consumer, I’m asked to be responsible for my health, to do my part to keep my costs down, and I ask for the best price a vendor has to offer when services are rendered. In return, my health cost sharing premium stays in the reasonable range. That seems like a fair trade.

I’ve had two friends sign up for similar programs in the past six months, as they ran into the same astronomical costs that I did. I imagine these organizations will attract many more users in the months and years ahead as costs continue marching higher.

If you end up looking into these programs for yourself, check them all out to find the best fit. And if CHM ends up the top choice, tell them I mentioned it… because they also have a referral program.

Rodney

Follow me on Twitter ;@RJHSDent

By Rodney Johnson, Senior Editor of Economy & Markets

http://economyandmarkets.com

Copyright © 2017 Rodney Johnson - All Rights Reserved Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.

Rodney Johnson Archive

© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules