Sunday, November 8, 2015

Have You Heard of Medi-Share?

From Donna L. Watkins

Shopping for insurance? Have you heard of Medi-Share? It's the New Testament version of what we know as insurance. Christian members share each other's medical expenses through their "monthly share."  Medi-Share is a not-for-profit ministry that began in 1993.

Medi-Share members (154,000+) have shared $1.1 billion in medical bills since the ministry's founding. It's not insurance in any form or fashion. Much easier than all that paperwork since Medi-Share is also an advocate for you to get lower rates in your medical bills since the provider is not having to file all those forms to collect on insurance or Medicare.

The Affordable Care Act includes a special provision, so Medi-Share members are exempt from the mandate to purchase insurance or face financial penalties. Plus you can join any day of the year. You can also choose your own Provider or use the Medi-Share Provider database.

After the Affordable Care Act took effect, we figured paying the penalties would be better than paying for insurance since we had not had any insurance since 1987. Instead we had put a monthly amount into a bank savings account for any medical care needed. When you pay cash (which is what payments from Medi-Share are handled), you get from 30-50% off your medical bills.  We experienced that over the years as we paid cash for any medical bills.

When you pay cash you get to choose what you want done.  In July 2014 I spent three nights in the hospital and because I was paying cash, I got to choose what tests I wanted done or not done.  Insurance companies have all kinds of rules about what medical providers "need to" do with tests, visits, and prescriptions.  Some things are done daily that don't need to be done but one time.  I'm sure many of you have stories to tell of your own, so I won't pursue that avenue of thought.

However, when I calculated up the amount of the fines to not have medical insurance, it was obviously not going to be the way to go.  Each year it got higher and more prohibitive.  Looked like we'd be draining our personally-funded medical savings by paying all those fines, so we had to look around for a solution.  The first shock was the price of insurance.  I couldn't imagine making those payments.  To me it was money down the drain since we had had very few medical bills in the 28 years since we chose not to purchase insurance after my husband left the corporate world to grow a business of our own.

Besides the "wasted" funds, we wanted to have a choice that didn't include funding abortions.  We also wanted to choose any Provider we wanted. It's been a smooth ride and we absolutely love knowing that our monthly share is being directly applied to medical bills within the Body of Christ. That truly excites me!

Some Christian is getting our money, not some huge corporation.  And our share was 1/3 of what the insurance cost would be ... even if we went through our own corporation for insurance.  Share amounts are based on household size and the Annual Household Portion (AHP) option.  That's what you will pay out of pocket before you submit bills to Medi-Share.

Members of Medi-Share have a God-honoring choice for their health care, and their dollars will never be used for procedures that go against their conscience. With 7 levels of sharing, you can find flexible options to fit for your family and your budget. You also get the advantage that other members are praying for you and encouraging you.

Your monthly share is given to whomever Medi-Share applies it to and you are told their name so you can send them a note or just pray for them or have no contact with them, but it surely puts a smile on your face to know your money served a Christian purpose.

Check out how Medi-Share works and check what your monthly share would be. Watch the video and get more information or check on the amount your share would be at the Medi-Share website.

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