The struggle is real. For healthy-but-homebound American families entering their second year of close-quarters pandemic life, keeping fit is crucial for preserving our health and sanity. Regular exercise is proven to reduce stress, increase strength, improve sleep quality, strengthen the immune system, regulate blood pressure, and aid vaccines with antibody production. In senior citizens, physical activity can improve balance, lowering the risk of fall-related injuries, help maintain cognitive function, and prolong independence–improving the life expectancy and quality-of-life for our most vulnerable populations.
However, for many Americans, a healthcare program that allows them to receive the medical care they need to stay healthy seems to be out of reach.
An issue that many Americans consider to be a problem with the current structure of the US healthcare system is that there is little to no incentive to be a savvy healthcare consumer. After all, the system is so complicated and opaque that it’s often easier to just pay the monthly price, receive the medical care when you need it, and move on without thinking much about it. But for those among us who strive to be healthy and play an active role in our healthcare and more importantly, our health, a new way to manage our healthcare, known as healthcare sharing is an intriguing option.
Healthcare sharing ministries, such as Share HealthCare, are Christian-based organizations who promote healthy living as a way to honor our most precious gift from God – our body. The importance placed upon taking good care of our bodies by healthcare sharing ministries has led them to be a popular choice for young and healthy Americans to pay for their medical expenses.
As a fully compliant member-to-member cost sharing organization, Share HealthCare enables health-conscious individuals and families to be informed and savvy healthcare consumers. From the state-of-the-art membership dashboard, Share HealthCare members can track their expenses, see what their monthly share amount is being shared towards, and manage their account. Additionally, Share HealthCare has no “provider network,” meaning members can continue seeing their preferred medical professionals–often for less than they were paying through their traditional healthcare plan.
“As health systems struggle with their own financial crises, this is a good time…to partner more closely with hospitals and doctors,” says Harvard Medical School senior lecturer Vivian S. Lee, MD. As self-pay patients in a healthsharing community that puts wellness first, Share HealthCare members develop a close working relationship with their medical providers and make informed decisions about their care. All personal medical and financial decisions are made by the member, not the healthshare program.
Share HealthCare members agree to abstain from illicit drugs, avoid dangerous activities, and exercise regularly. As a result, members of Share HealthCare suffer fewer injuries and chronic illnesses, fewer pre-existing conditions, and have quicker recovery periods. And because each member assumes personal responsibility for his or her good health, Share HealthCare members are a low-risk community who enjoy significant savings on common eligible medical procedures. Additionally, they also enjoy lower monthly prices than many of them are used to paying on the healthcare marketplace.
The Harvard Business Review reports that healthcare costs will continue to skyrocket in 2021, as monthly prices for programs on the marketplace are projected to rise between 4% and 40% nationwide. While this latest increase is attributed to uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, the trend is nothing new. Kaiser Family Foundation data released in 2019 shows that health insurance premiums for a family of four increased by 54% between 2009 and 2019 while wages grew by only 4%–a disparity which forces many families, even healthy ones, to survive with an inadequate healthcare program, or none at all.
With programs starting as low as $149/month, Share HealthCare has membership options for any size family or budget. Each month, members set aside a voluntary gift in an FDIC-insured account to be used to help pay for eligible medical bills submitted by other Share HealthCare members. When a member is confronted with an unexpected eligible medical expense, they simply upload documentation to the membership dashboard and the bills are reimbursed by the monthly share amounts of fellow members.
In addition to savings on inpatient and outpatient medical care, medical expenses eligible for sharing with Share HealthCare include medical testing, medical imaging, ambulance transportation, prescription, wellness and screening appointments, urgent care, physical therapy, speech therapy, respiratory therapy, and vaccinations–making it an efficient way for you and your family to receive the healthcare you need during these uncertain times.