To our recently enrolled members, welcome and congratulations on your effort to escape the third-party healthcare payment system where somebody else pays the bill, e.g., an insurance company, an employer, or the government. This transition is not necessarily easy because most folks have been in the third-party payment system for so long that they have forgotten (or never experienced) what it’s like to make medical care choices based on both quality and price.
Throughout the course of your enrollment and membership in Liberty HealthShare, you have likely noticed that we use terminology that is specific to our organization and work. There are several reasons we choose to communicate in the way we do.
John Hunt, MD
In an era of constantly growing government, what can physicians and patients do to avoid getting abused and poorly treated by our politicized medical system? The answer is simple: NOT what physicians and patients have done for decades.
What physicians did wrong was to stop advocating for their patient’s finances. What patients did wrong was to stop asking how much their care will cost. After all, why bother to ask if some faceless, distant insurance company, or the government, is footing the bill?
As members of the Liberty HealthShare community, each of us has the responsibility to steward the resources of the entire membership. In order for healthcare sharing to function the way it should, we are duty-bound to try and save money whenever we access the health system. And let’s not be naïve: the health system is out to take all the money it can.
If you have been a Liberty HealthShare member for a while, you might already know how to submit a bill or receipt through your online ShareBox. You also may or may not have encountered an issue with Balance Billing. For those of you who are new to Liberty, or if you simply are not familiar with these two topics, here’s a quick refresher:
At Liberty HealthShare, we are often asked questions about our guidelines regarding pre-existing conditions. We frequently experience members as well as health care professionals referring to Liberty as insurance. It is important for our members to remember that Liberty is a cost-sharing ministry, not an insurance company. Insurance companies, HMOs, PPOs, and the like have dictated our healthcare options for years. Because we are a healthcare sharing ministry, we are free from insurance! We are free to choose our physician, choose our hospital, and choose our pharmacy. We are in charge of our own healthcare. As members of Liberty HealthShare, we must take the role of stewards who strive to minimize cost for all of our members.
Member Has A Healthcare Eye-Opener: When Costs Became Her Number One Concern, Karen Found Liberty HealthShare
Whatever your reason for joining Liberty HealthShare; whether it’s our community of like-minded people, the freedom that comes with directing and managing your own healthcare, or the financial responsibility you can exercise as a member, we are glad you are here. It is our goal that you experience all these benefits and more through your membership. Just recently, Karen O. from Florida shared her impressions with us:
Getting the most medical care for your money
John Hunt, MD
Chief Medical Officer
Thirty-to-Fifty percent of medical procedures and tests are wasteful. As members of a Christian healthcare sharing ministry, each of us is obliged to think conscientiously about the choices we make regarding medical expenses. Certainly, if I ask my community to share in my medical expense, I ought to work very hard to make sure that the expense is reasonable.
Saving Money on Prescriptions
John Hunt, MD
Chief Medical Officer, Liberty HealthShare
You have probably noticed that prescription medications are extremely affordable in some cases, and terribly expensive in others. There are several reasons for this phenomenon. Some drug prices benefit from free markets and generally free international trade, with prices dropping to nearly zero (think Walmart and all the pharmacies that followed them with their $4 low prices). These days, some antibiotics are even free. Don’t believe me? Just Google it. But for every cheap or free prescription, there are just as many or more astronomically expensive drugs out there.
John F Hunt, MD
In 2011, the state of Virginia tried to block the Federal government’s overreach by passing a law that made it illegal for any individual to be compelled to purchase health insurance. Unfortunately a loophole was sewn in, one that allowed universities to demand that their students carry health insurance.