7 Health Care Questions to Ask During Open Enrollment
With the ACA Open Enrollment Period Here, More Than 270,000 Americans Have Discovered Biblical Health Care Sharing Through Samaritan Ministries
November 4, 2019
PEORIA, Ill.—For the millions who may be looking for a better approach to their health care during the current Nov. 1-Dec. 15 Affordable Care Act (ACA) open enrollment period, Samaritan Ministries International (samaritanministries.org), one of the leading health care sharing ministries in the country, offers the affordable, effective, God-honoring, direct-sharing approach used by its more than 270,000 members.
As many consider other options during this period, the ministry encourages them to ask questions about health care sharing and pray about whether membership in Samaritan Ministries is right for them.
The more than 82,000 member households (270,000-plus individuals) are sharing approximately $30 million in medical needs—person to person and family to family—each month. And countless Samaritan members say they are “happily uninsured” and plan to stay that way.
For 25 years, Samaritan’s growing Biblical community has helped fellow believers with their medical needs, connecting them not only financially but also through prayer, personal notes and cards of encouragement.
“With the open enrollment period beginning, some may still have questions about their health care options, and Samaritan Ministries believes those questions can lead them to something better than what they are doing now,” said Samaritan Ministries Vice President of External Relations Anthony Hopp. “Today, more than a quarter of a million people around the world are engaging in health care sharing through Samaritan because they appreciate the reasonable monthly shares, a choice of providers, transparency and prayer support, while sharing only in needs that don’t violate biblical principles.”
Samaritan member Jeff from Minnesota said his family discovered the health care sharing ministry three years ago and wished they “would have done so 20 years ago.”
“We have wasted hundreds of thousands of dollars over the years on health insurance,” Jeff said. “NEVER GOING BACK!”
Samaritan suggests these seven questions to ask in making health care decisions:
- How many options do I have through the ACA? Many states do not have ACA exchanges set up, or exchanges that were set up have collapsed because insurance companies have pulled out of them. Residents of those states who want to obtain insurance through the ACA must use healthcare.gov.
- How much will my health plan cost if I have to actually use it? To figure that out, you need to look not only at the amount of the monthly payment but also what your out-of-pocket costs will be when you need to use your insurance. What will your deductible be? Then, how much of the cost would be covered once the deductible is satisfied? Ninety percent? Eighty? Less?
- Will I be limited to a network? Most, if not all, health insurance plans have their own network of physicians and facilities. If you want to be treated by someone somewhere who is not in that network—where you feel more comfortable or will receive better treatment—you may pay more. Samaritan members are not restricted to any networks.
- Do I want to be limited by a government system? When private insurance companies offer plans through ACA exchanges, there’s still plenty of government involvement. For instance, the ACA mandates that policies offer specific types of coverage, which can drive up costs.
- What are my premiums helping pay for? Many health insurance companies—and, frequently, federal and state government plans—fund abortion, gender reassignment procedures and other practices that violate biblical teachings. Voluntarily paying into those plans presents an ethical and moral challenge for those who follow Christ. Samaritan members do not share expenses for any unbiblical practices.
- Will I receive more than just money? Spiritual support, in prayer and encouragement, is lacking in most private and government health insurance plans. Health insurance also depersonalizes health care by coming between the doctor and the patient. How comfortable are you with an impersonal third party deciding which treatment is needed or will be paid for?
- What other options do I have? Consider other ways to handle health care, perhaps by combining membership in a direct-care practice and lab- and prescription-discount services—in essence, creating your own custom health care plan. With health care sharing through Samaritan, Christians support each other’s health care burdens by sending monthly shares directly to fellow members.
Samaritan member Meredith from Tennessee said she is more than happy to tell others about the many advantages of health care sharing through Samaritan Ministries.
“I often tell friends who are hesitant to consider a Christian health sharing ministry that [Samaritan] has been the ONLY organization to operate exactly as they advertise/promise on the front end,” Meredith said. “We have felt loved by the Body of Christ and cared for both financially and spiritually as we’ve navigated unexpected family health bills.
“We are so very thankful for the opportunity to participate in Samaritan Ministries,” she added. “For us personally, we are convinced that sharing each other’s health care expenses is better stewardship than participating in insurance. We pay less but, more importantly, have experienced better access to necessary care. We assume this is also true for other members as well. Thank you. I pray that Samaritan Ministries may grow and thrive and be continually possible regardless of changing laws.”
To interview a representative from Samaritan Ministries International, contact Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, Patrick Benner, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, or Deborah Hamilton, ext. 102.