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Dealing Without Health Insurance

Last post Sun, Jul 29 2012 1:27 PM by Frugal Agent. 50 replies.
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  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 12:58 PM

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
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    Dealing Without Health Insurance

    With unemployment up, more people are making the hard choice of going without insurance. It doesn't have to mean that you go without healthcare, however.

    Dealing without health insurance

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 1:50 PM In reply to

    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

    Although I have insurance, I have experienced my insurance not being accepted when I was on a trip and had strep throat. One trip to the urgent care, a strep throat test, and an antibiotic shot cost me $345. If that's a typical doctor visit, I can see where it would cause a lot of pain to someone who has no insurance, especially when they have more than one visit to pay for.

    That being said, I don't believe the plan to nationalize health care is the right way to go. It doesn't work in other countries, and it's not going to work here. My belief is what we really need is AFFORDABLE health care. If healthcare for the average family cost about the same amount as a monthly car insurance payment, a lot more people would be able to afford it. Leave the government programs to people who truly cannot pay, and make those programs better for the people who use them.

    Jill

  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 2:03 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
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    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

     For anyone who may have missed it, there is a site listed where information can be found on federally funded clinics that work with patients who are not insured. While I don't advocate leaning heavily on assistance, sometimes the need is there and can not be ignored. 

    There are also privately funded clinics and physicians who have lowered their fees to reasonable levels, reduce costs for those with lower incomes or who will work out payments with patients. I am not sure how to find these so if anyone has info, do share.

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 2:03 PM In reply to

    • Pat
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Tue, Mar 6 2007
    • Colorado
    • Posts 14,463

    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

    jillibean:
    One trip to the urgent care, a strep throat test, and an antibiotic shot cost me $345. If that's a typical doctor visit, I can see where it would cause a lot of pain to someone who has no insurance, especially when they have more than one visit to pay for
     

    I think costs vary quite a bit. That would be pretty high for here. I agree that we need affordable health care. If we had that, there wouldn't be as much strain put on other resources.

    The article spoke of "community health care resources," meaning those with reduced rates or free services for those without insurance or other resources. If health care wasn't so expensive, services like those wouldn't be so crowded and would be easier to use for those who needed them. 

    Doing without health insurance is not all that uncommon. I think that I heard that 40% of all Americans are uninsured or insured only by government programs (Medicare, etc.) I don't have the statistics at hand, though, so I may be wrong.

     

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  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 2:10 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

     

    Pat:
    If health care wasn't so expensive, services like those wouldn't be so crowded and would be easier to use for those who needed them. 

    I agree. I have used government funded facilities before where the fee was based on income. We could afford to pay something just not the high amounts other doctors or hospitals charged. I can't say that we got the best care or that we didn't have to wait in long lines but it was better than no care. If other clinics were more reasonable, I could have taken my money to them.

     


    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 4:01 PM In reply to

    • Iguana
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Fri, Dec 5 2008
    • Posts 49

    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

    jillibean:

    Although I have insurance, I have experienced my insurance not being accepted when I was on a trip and had strep throat. One trip to the urgent care, a strep throat test, and an antibiotic shot cost me $345. If that's a typical doctor visit, I can see where it would cause a lot of pain to someone who has no insurance, especially when they have more than one visit to pay for.

    That being said, I don't believe the plan to nationalize health care is the right way to go. It doesn't work in other countries, and it's not going to work here. My belief is what we really need is AFFORDABLE health care. If healthcare for the average family cost about the same amount as a monthly car insurance payment, a lot more people would be able to afford it. Leave the government programs to people who truly cannot pay, and make those programs better for the people who use them.

    Jill

     

    I don't know about that. I used to live in Germany and had state-run health insurance. A certain amount was taken out of my check each month for health insurance, I had a health insurance card with a chip in it, and getting health care was simple - just show up to the doc's office and show the card. I never even saw a piece of paperwork or a bill. Everything was taken care of. And I didn't just go for a hangnail or something - I had a baby there. Same deal.

    The contrast was back in the States where we had private health insurance due to me being self-employed. Even with insurance, my family routinely had bills like what you described above, because we rarely met the deductible. We ended up paying most everything out of pocket. There I completely agree with you about affordability.

     I really feel for the uninsured (as we have been in the past also), especially those with health conditions. 

  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 5:52 PM In reply to

    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

    I agree.  Why can't we all do like the Europeans?  In my country Argentina, health care is not a luxury.  There is something for everyone, the cheap, free, health care where you might have to wait a long time, the medium priced and the hight priced like the US.  Take your pick.... It was like this when I was growing up.  My family with only a single mother working, we had braces, surgeries, everything done.  Yes, my mom sacrificed to pay for braces and whatever hospital stays but when she was diagnosed with a brain tumor while living in the US, she didn't hesitate to go back and have the surgery done.  No bills to pay for the rest of your life.  Whatever she paid she paid cash.  If I ever need a surgery I might go home as well.  Our facilities are not great due to the economy but the physicians are well trained. 
  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 5:53 PM In reply to

    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

    When I said nationalized healthcare in other countries, I had Canada and Britain in mind. Nationalized healthcare doesn't work well in those countries. And, given the lobbyists and special interest groups that are allowed to influence policy, it's only too possible that nationalized healthcare here could have the same problems. In my opinion the government should only be providing healthcare for those who truly cannot afford it, not those who are priced out of being able to afford it due to a limited pool of paying customers.

    If in my ideal world having health insurance was mandatory (like car insurance), the premiums would come down because there would be many more people paying them. And companies would be competing for your healthcare dollars, so you would get better care for less money.

    Jill

  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 5:54 PM In reply to

    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

     We can't afford health insurance for our family of 7.  The kids have CHIP and I just keep healthy and hope for the best. 

  • Wed, Apr 29 2009 6:13 PM In reply to

    • Newfs
    • Top 150 Contributor
      Female
    • Joined on Sun, Feb 15 2009
    • MA
    • Posts 386

    Re: Dealing Without Health Insurance

    The state of Massachusettes, every citizen is required by LAW to have health insurance. If your employer does not supply you with coverage, you still have to have it. Can't afford it, then is is supplied to you by the state of MA, based on a sliding scale of income. Don't have an income ,  then it's free...but you better have a health insurance card..... think you can get away with noty having health insurance in MA, nope.... when you file you state income tax every year, the state requires your health ID number, if you don't supply that on your tax return the state will fine you $300.00 the first year, then it goes up every year after that.....I do have health coverage paid for by my employer.... but it makes me feel good that every man, woman and child in the state of MA has health coverge.... who pays for it???? Every tax payer in the state of MA, but thats OK with me...

    Until we Newf again....
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