As I’ve noted all over this site, membership in Samaritan Ministries is awesome, but completely different from the insurance plan you used to know. It’s far less complicated and puts us back in charge. Membership removes insurance blindness and we are now active participants in our care and billing. This is unfamiliar for people and something to get used to, but once you get comfortable with the idea of being back in control you realize how imprisoned you once were to a very complicated and unfair system.
- Check our mail and Pay our low monthly share to a member in need
- Pray for that member
- Attend church regularly
- Make our own decisions about our health care without influence/pressure from an insurance company
- Live as healthy as we can
- Pay for our own preventative care and routine medications and make healthy/responsible choices accordingly
- Receive bills whenever we have medical needs
- Get itemized billing if not initially offered and submit those itemized bills to Samaritan
- Inform our providers about the payment timeline and ask for a discount (Samaritan helps with the discounts if we need it)
- Pay our providers when the shares come in
- Move on with life!
It’s really pretty simple and can be boiled down to:
- Pay our share
- Pray for members
- Submit our qualifying bills to Samaritan
- Pay our bills with shares from members
- Communicate with our providers
- Live healthy
- Go to church
I’m sure every family manages their membership a little differently in terms of saving for planned expenses (how often, how much), how much time they dedicate to prayer for other members, and finding discounts on their own. Some members have better access to different types of care than others, while some are very limited. Each family is unique and each one has the choice and control to make decisions which best fit their family. And within Samaritan’s guidelines they are each supported and cared for without the limitations, restrictions or headaches that insurance provides.
We had different responsibilities as insurance customers. On their system we saw the doctor, never really asked what something costs, asked very few questions, made our copay, then hoped and prayed we wouldn’t get caught with a huge bill a few weeks down the road. Each month we paid our premium with annoyance at how much it costs for how little we get. We stressed in a world of unknowns, occasionally confused by the strange math of an insurance EOB (“what do I owe?” and “why didn’t they pay that?”), spending endless time on the phone with providers and insurance reps hoping to get some clarification and bills fixed. Toward the end of the year our excitement over the holidays was marred by the knowledge that our premiums and deductibles were going up again and feeling powerless to stop it. We stressed over how to pay for it all. Our calendars were tied to our deductibles. We got used to it, it was familiar. “That’s just how it is, no way to change it, I gotta have insurance, right?, but I don’t know how to pay for it.”
Samaritan removes 90% of that. We still deal with our providers of course, but there is no longer a struggle over deductibles, high premiums, coverage battles, waiting on the phone, strange math, or end of year stresses caused by insurance expenses, limitations or deductibles starting over. Our budgets can breathe easier, our needs are paid and also supported by prayer, we are part of a community instead of a tick mark in a database. We are brothers and sisters in Christ helping each other, instead of piggy banks for CEOs and stockholders.
We now choose assurance instead of insurance. We choose Samaritan. And we breathe easier knowing we are doing our part while also having the full support of Samaritan staff and members to get our bills paid and our spiritual needs lifted in prayer. God’s provision is glorious.