The skinny on HealthSHARE plans
As 'traditional' health Insurance skyrockets in price, many are seeking alternatives. Please note that you should do your own research - any of the links or info here do NOT constitute a recommendation!
For example, most Christian plans have a special provision in the current healthcare law and are exempt from the requirement to purchase a costly Obamacare plan or face a tax penalty. Be aware that there is some coverage not offered - those that are 'medical expenses going against a Christian way of life', according to their website. These include drug abuse recovery, getting in a car accident with alcohol in your blood, or getting an abortion. Your monthly payments are not tax deductible, like they usually will be with conventional health insurance premiums.
Comment at the very bottom of this post if there are any plans that YOU know about that you have experienced or researched, that fall into the category of 'non-traditional'. REMEMBER - companies make changes to their plans - do your own research - any of the links or info here do NOT constitute a recommendation!
Companies featured in this chart:
*** Notes *** 1: Samaritan and Medi-Share do allow non-evangelicals, provided they agree with their doctrinally based Statement of Faith. Samaritan requires the endorsement (signature) of your ecclesiastical leader. Medi-Share may require such an endorsement. Additionally, CMF CURO is a Catholic Member-Representative to Samaritan Ministries. Solidartiy HealthShare (a Catholic oriented ministry) is administered by Liberty HealthShare.
2: All limit or exclude pre-existing conditions to some extent. Prospective members may be denied entrance, based on each organization's applicable membership requirements or guidelines. See individual web sites for varying details. In most cases with pre-existing conditions, sharing is initially limited and phased in over time. Liberty and Medi-Share offer and require provisional programs at additional costs to help members overcome certain conditions (e.g. high blood pressure, or obesity)
3: Liberty HealthShare limits sharing during the first 60 days to accidents, acute illness or injury.
4: Medi-Share members can use any doctor/hospital, but use of network providers increases savings. Medi-Share members' providers submit bills directly to Medi-Share for discounting and processing but members who choose a non-network provider may be responsible for a penalty and won’t receive a discount.
Liberty is billed directly by the provider and handles the repricing for the patient. Automatic billing and bill negotiation factor heavily into evaluation as ease of use and repeatable discounting are significant factors in long term value and cost stability for both the members and specific sharing ministries at large.
Samaritan and Christian Health Care Ministries require the members to receive the bills and negotiate any possible discounts.
5: None include long term maintenance drugs. See individual program details for various limitations. Most associate the sharing of prescription drugs with a medical incident. (e.g. doctor's appointments) Liberty ranks drugs by tier and limits sharing to highest tier.
6: Investigate the guidelines for information on the sharing of alternative and natural treatments, which are subject to limitations.
7: The different levels of program options offered by each vary significantly. However, the top-tier programs provided by these ministries are quite similar. See individual program details for the distinctions. Without catastrophic options most programs have limits from to $125k-$250k per medical incident. All groups (except Christian Health Care Ministries) have an enrollment fee ranging from $125 (Liberty) to $200 (Samaritan). Sharing Guidelines may vary (specific exceptions, rules etc). See individual sites for details.
(From their website) Christian Healthcare Ministries is different from the other two ministries in that it offers a variety of membership levels to choose from depending on how much coverage you want. You can even choose different levels for different family members, which is a HUGE perk and gives each family plenty of options.
Their GOLD package is $150 monthly per person (unit) and includes maternity coverage (and will even cover home births) All medical bills are shared (paid) after a $500 TOTAL personal contribution per year.
Their Silver package is $85 per person (unit) per month and includes significantly less benefits than the gold with a$1,000 personal responsibility per unit AND per incident. (With the Gold plan you only pay $500 per year TOTAL.)
The Bronze package is $45 a month per person (unit) with a $5,000 personal responsibility per unit, per incident and the same reduced benefits as the Silver plan. This is ideal for someone just looking or minimal coverage and catastrophic coverage and also satisfies the Obamacare mandate as a bonus.
Each month, your monthly share is matched with another’s eligible medical bills. Through a secure online portal, Christian Care Ministry coordinates the direct sharing of medical costs between members. You will know each month whose bills your share is helping pay, and when you have eligible bills and your annual household portion (AHP) has been met, your fellow believers will be sharing those bills and praying for you as well. Check out our Interactive Overview!
A great overview on the process with frequently asked questions can be found here.
(from their website) Join a community of health-conscious people who practice longstanding Christian principles in sharing healthcare costs. Liberty HealthShare℠ exists for everyone who purchases healthcare for themselves or their family, or who wants to control their own healthcare.
Liberty HealthShare℠ is not insurance. It simply unites like-minded people to share medical costs together.