Cost-Sharing Ministries: Are They Just Like Health Insurance?

it's no secret that our healthcare system is broken and the answer is obviously far from simple now medical cost sharing ministries are popping up offering consumers an option outside of traditional health insurance but are they the answer to rising medical costs or another case of money versus medicine

with health insurance becoming harder to navigate and more expensive than ever people have been turning to groups called cost sharing ministries for their medical bills they pay monthly dues in hopes that if a large medical cost should arise the group will flip the bill however the groups say

nothing is guaranteed and because they aren't insurance companies they don't follow the same laws and there's no shortage of people coming forward saying they took a huge financial hit because of a cost sharing ministry one man Keith was paying over $500 a month towards a plan that he

was led to believe was similar to traditional health insurance when doctors informed me he needed a complex back surgery Keith checked with the hospital and his cost sharing ministry to make sure you'd be covered before he scheduled the procedure everyone insured Keith he would be covered and had

nothing to worry about but while he was in recovery he received the shock of a lifetime join us now to discuss via Skype is Keith so you come out of surgery you've had this necessary surgery performed purely looking at this from your experience with the cost your ministry

what happened when it came time to pay the bill there was a denial the hospital got involved they sent me a letter offering me a self pay rate just for the hospital stay alone was 119 thousand dollars that was about a forty thousand dollar savings of what the

insurance cost would have been and then what it was the total amount you were on the hook for Keith I guess somewhere in the ballpark of about two hundred fifteen thousand dollars between anesthesiologist the doctors the four days in the hospital where do things stand now for you

with all of this it's really you know I kind of wrote it off I met with bankruptcy attorney because there's absolutely no way at this point in my life that I'll ever get out from that type of moaning and I think your story of if I may interject

is an example of you felt or thought you were part of a traditional insurance system but you are not and that really is why we're talking about this a lot of people they make assumptions and rightly so you think you have a necessary procedure or surgery you end

up with the bills your insurance or in this case cautionary ministry doesn't pay for it and here you are staring bankruptcy in the face join us now to discuss this further via Skype or Washington State Insurance Commissioner Mike cried ler as well as consumer protection attorney Peter Holland

because Mike might be honest with you I was not aware that these cost sharing ministries existed in today's day and age and what is insurance well in many ways you're pooling people together to help mitigate risk and the theory of this sounds fine me but what how are

they different from traditional insurance and how are people like Keith quite frankly having their lives ruined because of it well for regular insurance they're going to be obligated to spend 80 cents of every dollar paying for providers hospitals doctors pharmacy costs that are associated with these these plans

that we're talking about right now the bad actors we're really talking about they only spend 16 cents of every dollar to providers paying on claims so these are these are people that have hijacked legitimate health sharing ministries to the point where they're not offering any real coverage it's

fairly limited but even if you go to a regular legitimate one you're going to find that they have limited coverage but some of these are really bottom feeders that are taking advantage of consumers so that other 84% is just going into the profit of these of these entities

absolutely it goes to pay for the people that are marketing agents and brokers it's going to the company itself they're in this business to make money there are for-profit entities that we're talking about as opposed to the kind of co-op local church type of operation which was envisioned

originally for these sharing ministries you

Leave a Comment!