I will be losing my employer sponsored health plan soon as my last day at HealthSource is 2/28/17. I will be eligible for COBRA of course but I know that 10 years ago when I looked at COBRA it was super expensive and I doubt that it will be any cheaper now since the amount listed on my W-2 as the amount paid for health insurance last year by my employer was over $20,000. Yup, 20k for a $3,000 per individual deductible plan with a HSA. We have been lucky and in the last 5+ years we have had high deductible plans, we only met the deductible one year. I looked on the Healthcare.gov website for a replacement plan and didn’t really find any high deductible plans – only really HMO plans to be found – which isn’t something I am interested in. I find this very strange considering most employer based plans have moved to high deductible plans. As I was looking into other options, I discovered Health Sharing Ministries.
I have decided to enroll my family in Liberty Complete through Liberty HealthShare. It is a Health Sharing Ministry run through the Mennonites. It has much lower administrative costs than your traditional health plans and puts an emphasis on wellness and health care prevention. The monthly fees go towards helping other members pay their health care costs. There are several other health sharing ministry programs out there like Medi-Share and Good Samaritan Ministries but those require members to be Christians who have regular church attendance – and I have family members who wouldn’t meet this requirement. Liberty does have the same lifestyle requirements as the other plans. There are also some things that aren’t covered, and there are pre-existing exclusions as there were with many plans before the ACA. Actually, it isn’t technically health insurance but it is another way of getting and giving assistance with healthcare. In the past, participating in a Health Share Ministry meant that the person didn’t have to pay the tax for not having insurance. I am not sure if this tax is going to be in effect in the future, but it is still a good idea to have a way to help pay for catastrophic events.
***Note *** This post, like all my other posts, is for general medical information only and is not to be taken as direct advice. Please consult your personal physician for more information.