Posted by admin | Posted in Samaritan Perks | Posted on 22-03-2014
If you have an insurance plan you assume and expect (and rightly so) that your monthly premium will automatically increase each year. Ours did. Pretty much everyone’s does. Each year we got a letter in the mail from Blue Cross telling us what our new premium was going to be (gasp, usually high double digit increase) and if we didn’t like it here were a few plans with much higher deductibles we could pick to keep the premium lower. Yuck. Eventually it just got to be too much. Premium still too high, deductible so high it was laughable and made the insurance basically worthless.
Now we have Samaritan Ministries. Our monthly share doesn’t increase each year automatically. In fact, the average time it takes for an increase to be voted on is every 18-30 months. That’s roughly every 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 YEARS. The last time the monthly share increase happened was Sept 2016. Prior to that it was July 2014. 26 months without a share increase. Wow. And the increases are not high double digits. The typical is 10-11%. Yup, that’s it. And did you notice I mentioned a vote? Members actually VOTE on whether to increase the monthly cost. It only becomes official if 60% agree. When was the last time your insurance company gave you a choice on what the monthly cost increase would be? Never.
Insurance companies increase your premium to help pay for rising medical costs, but also for their overly high salaries (CEOs making in the millions!), increasing administrative costs, and to pay for services some of us just don’t feel are right (abortions). Sorry, not doing that.
Because Samaritan monthly shares increase so slowly the gap between what Samaritan members pay each month and what insurance companies charge gets bigger every year. If there is a reduction in premium it comes with a steep increase in deductible. Not with Samaritan. We have a $300 personal responsibility per incident. $300! Compared to our $6350 deductible with Blue Cross that’s a huge difference! AND….this is awesome… if we get a discount on our medical bill Samaritan applies it to our $300 personal responsibility amount. So a discount of $100 means we only pay $200 out of pocket. A $300 discount means we pay NOTHING for that incident!! Honestly, can you imagine your health insurance company doing that? I think one of the auto insurance companies has that vanishing deductible deal, but no health insurance does that, and you pay extra each month for the privilege of a vanishing deductible. Samaritan doesn’t charge extra for this, they just do it!! Again, wow. So wonderful.
I feel like the blinders have been ripped off. How did I not see how much of a joke my old health insurance policy had become? Well, maybe I did actually, and just felt powerless to do anything about it. Thank goodness I found Samaritan Ministries.
This article ( http://money.cnn.com/2014/03/19/news/economy/obamacare-doctors/index.html?hpt=hp_t3 ) highlights an important problem for people with healthcare.gov (obamacare) insurance policies. They are having troubling finding doctors, clinics and hospitals who will take the plans. What good does insurance do for you in an emergency when the local hospital won’t take your insurance? You’re paying out of pocket then, PLUS the cost of your useless premiums. The woman in the article is driving over an hour for services which exist in her hometown just to find a doctor who will take her insurance plan.
This problem is by design, the insurance companies narrowed the available list of approved doctors and hospitals in order to keep costs down. But some doctors are just refusing to take it anyway because obamacare policies don’t pay very well.
It’s ironic that the ability to see any doctor you want and not have to worry about being stuck with a huge bill is becoming a problem for those with insurance, and is one of the happy anchor points for members of healthcare sharing ministries. Samaritan members don’t have to worry about networks. We just go in as self pay, ask for a discount, give the doctor no paperwork headaches and he gets paid a fair price. Samaritan members are reimbursed for the bigger incidents over $300, and we can see any medical doctor we want. No insurance refusals. No network headaches. Just healthcare on our own terms.
The lady in the article wants to change her insurance plan, but healthcare.gov is telling her she can’t until next year. If she had just gotten a policy through the insurance company directly she could change it now. Of course, it would probably cost more and not have any subsidies. There is a tradeoff in the insurance world; convenience costs money. Lots of money. In the healthcare sharing world we get the benefit of convenience AND low monthly costs. So nice.
Posted by admin | Posted in ACA-Obamacare | Posted on 19-03-2014
The media loves bad news, so the trainwreck that is Obamacare is getting a lot of press lately. Especially with the looming signup deadline of Mar 31 coming fast. I have read several articles about people who are stuck; either stuck with huge medical bills or stuck trying to change policies, or stuck in the website and unable to move forward (apparently the site is better, but still broken).
I know that membership in Samaritan Ministries isn’t for everyone, but for the people who are now facing huge medical bills from accidents and sudden heart attacks that I have read about, I can’t help but wish they had known about a healthcare sharing ministry. Had they been members those bills would be shared and not a burden for them. I have so much sympathy for the people who are caught in this mess, and I fervently pray that a good solution will appear for them. The man in Las Vegas who signed up for insurance, but now the company won’t pay (sticking him with $407,000) and the poor minister who lost his policy, signed up for a new one, but had an accident in between those dates and is now on the hook for about $100,000; both of them could have been helped by being a Samaritan member. I wish they were.
No matter where you are, or what your situation, I hope you will look at what Samaritan (or other healthcare sharing ministry) has to offer. Maybe it’s a fit for you, maybe not. But I want people to know they have other options and the situation can be improved. I remember that desperate feeling when we got our insurance cancellation and seeing what our new rate plan was. It was dreadful. If we had a major medical expense on top of that I don’t know how I’d handle it.
From what I read in the news a huge percentage of people still aren’t even aware of the March 31 deadline. There’s going to be a lot of grief and anger in the months following when the truth is learned that they can’t signup for Obamacare plans again until mid November of 2014. Fortunately you can join Samaritan anytime. If you have a gap in “coverage” less than 3 months of the year there’s no penalty. If your gap is bigger than that, then you only pay the penalty for the months you had nothing. Qualifying “coverage” includes an insurance company plan or membership in an exempted healthcare sharing ministry (like Samaritan). So if you’re not on an insurance policy, join Samaritan and avoid the IRS penalty (or at least most of it, depending on how long you have a gap).
If you’re interested in downloading the free information packet (no obligation and no one calls you unless you want them to) click here: (request form)