by Ashley Lipman
You’ve likely heard a popular saying about skinning felines, and the variety of ways in which this can be done. Well, not so many folks are doing that these days, but the lesson of the maxim applies to healthcare for sure. There is more than one way for you to go about insuring your health, and getting the most for the least may not look how you expect.
For example, the ACA, or Affordable Care Act, recently backhanded the American taxpayer in corporate and private terms. Everyone in the country has been compelled to pay for insurance, and as with almost any broad government initiative, this resulted in expanded costs rather than reduced ones—as well as expanded tax penalties.
For more information, you can find the Obamacare Penalty explained by Healthcare.com; in a nutshell, the worst case scenario is this: “…some people may choose to pay the tax penalty, which, in many cases, is cheaper than buying insurance. Before you consider this option…it’s necessary to understand why having health insurance is important.”
See, that’s the thing: health insurance as a compulsion isn’t constitutional, and neither is the fine associated with it. Thankfully, jail-time doesn’t result from avoiding the program. That said, for many people in many stations of life, there really isn’t any sense paying between $250 and $1,000 a month for something they’ll never use.
If you’re a young person who stays in shape and eats right, you may be able to coast for a decade with a $1,000 emergency fund put away for those times you cut yourself or need other emergency medical attention at an Urgent Care clinic. If you pay in cash the day of your surgery, you could save $5k a year!
But this option isn’t suitable for many; especially those with young families. However, going with government-endorsed agencies may not necessarily produce the greatest discount, either. It may pay to go with fringe options like Medi-Share, which is reputed to reduce healthcare costs against traditional expenses by half.
If you can drop a $1k/month health insurance cost to $500 a month, that’s a yearly savings of $6k. But again, even that may be too expensive. Do you have a regular doctor that you work with to help you maintain your health?
Doctors are often more apt to be paid through an insurance company, than out-of-pocket. The result is, they often don’t really care where their patients are at financially, provided they have some insurance. Well, if you’re poor enough, you may qualify for certain programs that will remunerate healthcare institutions accordingly.
Ask Your Healthcare Professional
Ask your doctor or nurse leader about whether there are any options you can employ which will take full advantage of your financial situation. If you’re making $100k a year, $12k may not be an unreasonable expense in terms of healthcare. But if you’re only making $32k a year, you may not be able to enjoy a reasonable standard of living with those kinds of costs.
Your health care professional may be able to point you to certain programs designed specifically for families which experience such expenses. And this can be a much better tactic than “gaming the system”, as the saying goes.
That said, there are those who save on healthcare in just this way. The bigger the system, the more loopholes exist. As modern healthcare has become exponentially bloated and ineffective, people from all economic stations have begun looking for holes they can exploit. If it’s not illegal, it may be considerable—ask your healthcare professional.
You may do a few Google searches to see what options are available to you in this regard. And, finally, consider that if you don’t shop around, you’re definitely not going to get the best deal. So look before you leap, and leap the right direction! If you’re careful about it, you can save hundreds or thousands every month.
Author bio: Ashley Lipman
Ashley is a super-connector who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized blogger outreach plans depending on the industry and competition.