Traditional healthcare is out of reach for some people. Know that you're not alone if you're one of them. There are also various options to examine that can provide the health care you require while also saving you money.
Insurance companies often provide traditional healthcare through your work. When you require medical care, you pay a monthly premium to help keep your out-of-pocket costs low. These medical plans come in a number of price ranges and can cover a wide range of health services.
However, there are alternative cost-cutting measures that may be more appropriate for people who do not have access to inexpensive healthcare. Here are a few healthcare choices to think about.
Short-Term Health Insurance
Temporary health insurance or Term health insurance are other terms for short-term medical insurance. It might act as a stopgap measure to help you fill up gaps in your health coverage.
The phrase rate varies from state to state. Short-term insurance, on the other hand, can cover you for a month to a year. While it does not meet the Affordable Care Act's essential coverage requirements, it functions similarly to long-term health insurance.
Health Savings Account (HSA)
A Health Savings Account (HSA) allows you to save for medical expenses while also lowering your taxed income. You can deposit money into an HSA and withdraw it tax-free if you utilize it for eligible medical costs.
It's made to work with a high-deductible health plan that meets certain criteria. Your money enters tax-free, grows tax-free, and leaves tax-free when you use it, as long as it's utilized for qualified medical expenditures.
Unused funds can be carried over from year to year, and your account remains yours even if you change jobs, health insurance policies, or retire.
Association Health Plans
Small enterprises and self-employed people can enroll in Association Health Plans. It enables them to form groups within industries, professions, or geographic areas to purchase large group health insurance or self-insure. Association Health Plans aren't a new type of health insurance, but they do offer a method for small businesses to participate in the existing market.
Health Discount Card
A Health Discount Card (aka Medical Discount Cards) is another alternative to health insurance plans. It’s a cost-effective approach aimed at reducing common medical expenses that are not typically covered through standard health care programs.
Discount cards offer benefits like:
- An affordable monthly enrollment fee
- Access to a wide variety of health services including doctor and clinic visits—all at reduced rates
- Dental, vision, and alternative health services for some cards
- The option to pick and choose among thousands of different providers
- Discounts as high as 70 percent on various services
Discount cards can be used as a compliment, especially if you have some form of health insurance. This is true for non-covered services such as eyeglasses, as well as the option of seeing a different practitioner who isn't covered by insurance.
If you’re participating in a medical cost-sharing community, you will join a group of other like-minded people and pool your resources to share medical costs. It is not insurance. A healthshare ministry (which they’re also called) doesn’t function in the same way health insurance does.
What you’ll do is to contribute your monthly shared amount. Then you can choose which doctor you’d like to see. You have all of the control. You’re even encouraged to shop around for the lowest cost available—it’s all up to you.
After you visit your provider, you send your medical expense to other members of your sharing community. They have agreed to support other like-minded members.
By sharing the cost, you and other members take control of your healthcare costs and make healthcare more affordable for one another.