Health Care Costs Stress Out Majority of Americans
Samaritan Ministries: Paying for Health Care Doesn’t Have to Be Stressful
PEORIA, Ill.—Two-thirds of Americans say the thought of their rising health care expenses is actually more stressful than the uncertainty of their own health or the health of their loved ones.
This is according to a survey from the American Psychological Association, whose report, “Stress in America: Uncertainty About Health Care,” found that 66 percent of Americans have stress over health care costs, followed by 63 percent who say that what may happen with their future health is stressful.
While uncertainty about one’s health may not be controllable, Samaritan Ministries International (samaritanministries.org) says that health care costs can be less stressful as a member of a health care sharing ministry.
“Dealing with health insurance—what is covered, what is paid for and the providers that patients are ‘permitted’ to see for their care—can be extremely stressful, and that is before all the bills that insurance did not cover start to arrive in the mail,” said Anthony Hopp, vice president of external relations for Samaritan Ministries, one of the leading health care sharing ministries in America. “Members of Samaritan Ministries still have health care bills, but their burden is shared by a Biblical community of more than a quarter of a million fellow members. Yes, health care still costs money, but with godly, affordable health care sharing, those expenses don’t have to be as stressful. Samaritan staff helps members all along the way, helping secure discounts and sometimes communicating with providers. And when checks arrive from fellow members, accompanied by uplifting cards and notes, it is a lower-stress health care experience like no other.”
Each month, Samaritan Ministries’ 77,000 member households (251,000-plus individuals) pray and send notes, cards and monthly financial shares directly to other member families. In this way, Samaritan members share $27 million in medical needs each month through an effective, affordable and God-honoring ministry that has shared medical needs for 23 years. The monthly financial share has never exceeded $495 for a family of any size and is even less for couples and singles.
Many Samaritan members say that their stress levels have decreased since being a part of this health care sharing family.
“I am so grateful to Samaritan Ministries,” said Ana of Washington. “Incurring the injury, undergoing surgery, not being able to work, and dealing with the health care industry and the demand for payments was all so-o-o-o stressful. The supportive and kind attitude of Samaritan Ministries staff was extremely helpful. I wish our health care system could model such behavior.”
Sarah from Texas was in a stressful situation when her 7-year-old son suffered a deep cut to his head just days before the family’s fifth baby was due.
“I was tempted to be stressed over finances,” she said. “With Samaritan Ministries, there was no need. Your service, availability, promptness and effectiveness has exceeded our hopes. We rave about the ministry to our friends and encourage anyone interested to join.”
Kimberly of Michigan said her family was “blown away” by the kind notes, prayers and financial provision following the sharing of her family’s first need.
“There is no concern or stress,” Kimberly said. “We left that with the Lord, and the Body of Christ has blessed us immensely! The staff at Samaritan is amazing and helpful. We are truly grateful for all the God-given gifts and abilities of everyone involved—members and staff alike!”
Pam from North Carolina reported on her experience when her family’s first need was shared.
“From my first phone call to ask how to submit a need, I was so blessed by the service I received,” Pam said. “The most encouraging was the prayer that was offered on our behalf. Having dealt with insurance for years, this was an unexpected surprise. I cannot put into words how much this meant at a time that was somewhat stressful. This has been such a blessing and has helped lift a financial burden that would have been too much for us to bear alone at this time in our lives.”
Samaritan Ministries offers two membership levels, Samaritan Classic and Samaritan Basic. Samaritan Basic has a lower monthly share coupled with a higher initial unshared amount than Samaritan Classic. This gives both present and future members two options for choosing what they believe is best for their families—and their budgets. Monthly shares for Samaritan Basic start as low as $100 for one person, $200 for two people and $250 for a family of any size, depending on age. Some guidelines differ between Samaritan Basic and Samaritan Classic; contact Samaritan Ministries for details or visit this link.