Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Christian Healthcare Ministries

 For several years, my wife had no health insurance.  Being disabled, I had Medicare and I purchased a Medicare Advantage plan from Blue Cross of Idaho, which covers all the stuff Medicare does not (which is really anything that does not put you in the hospital).  It is about $60/month, on top of the $160 or so held back from my disability check to pay for Medicare coverage.  This has turned out to be cheaper and better coverage than my last employer health insurance at State of Idaho, which I thought was pretty good.  Deductibles are utterly reasonable.  This should tell you how much of medical insurance is covering catastrophes.

My wife, until recently, stayed home to take care of me, which past the first six months after the stroke seemed unnecessary, but it was nice to have the company.  But what about insurance?  Obamacare, as many of its fans soon discovered, was hideously expensive with annual deductibles of $5000 typically.  Private insurance alternatives were no better.  (And that was the goal.)

If you are a professing Christian, Christian Healthcare Ministries may be a solution.  They operate on the New Testament model of Christians looking out for each other.  You pay a fixed amount each month, sort of like a insurance premium.  Any incident, meaning an accident or disease problem that exceeds $500 they cover the costs.  You are encouraged to pay upfront to get the cash discount, which is typically 10% off; in a few cases, this has been 50% off.  That $500 is not a deductible; my wife's clear-cell carcinoma treatment was paid in full, because getting above $500 was no problem.  She went back every six months, then every year for follow-up visits and each was reimbursed in full.  (This is all one incident as far as CHM is concerned.)

Even if you have insurance, this may be good if you have a high deductible.  Medicare has a $750 deductible for hospital stays and $250 for inpatient procedures (like the hernia repair a couple years ago).  CHM covered that $750 deductible.

Now that my wife is working and has health insurance, not quite as generous as my Medicare Advantage plan, we dropped her from CHM.  We can add her back in at any time.  Because of the Medicare deductibles I have stayed on CHM for $123 per month.  It may not make sense, because six months of CHM is one hospital stay deductible, but this makes it easy to add my wife back in, if needed.  And it is nice to know that I am helping out other Christians using CHM.  

Why so cheap?  CHM does not cover addiction treatment, mental illness, abortion, or STD treatment.  Except for mental illness, these are largely consequences of behaviors that professing Christians should not be doing; mental illness treatment can be hideously expensive.  Imagine what our society would spend on healthcare without substance abuse and promiscuity.

Back when you were required to have health insurance or pay a tax each year, CHM was considered health insurance even though for legal reasons, they must insist that they are not.

If you fit the profile visit here.

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