You're a member who has successfully shared a bill! You worked closely with your doctor to evaluate the course of your care, you pre-notified Liberty HealthShare of the procedure, and your bill was submitted promptly through your ShareBox. Now what? Everything you've read says that it may take 30-45 days for your bill to be processed, but what does "processed" mean? We receive this question from members often, especially if the wait is taking longer than expected. Delays can be frustrating without further information, and it is our desire that members feel at ease throughout the course of their cost sharing by being as transparent as possible every step of the way.
We often say that the adjustment to a healthsharing mentality from a third-party payment system mentality can be a drastic one. New members don't always understand our push for personal responsibility and a community mindset right away. It is our privilege to come alongside and equip members because we believe it honors the biblical standard of caring for one's neighbor. Our model is based in part off of Hebrews 13:16, which reads "Don’t neglect to do what is good and to share, for God is pleased with such sacrifices" (HCSB). Healthsharing is made possible when each member cares for the needs of another member as a means of pleasing the Lord. We hold this concept at the core of what we do.
The sharing mindset was built into the structure (and name!) of our ShareBox system. Our members know that the digital ShareBox on our website is the receptacle both for their suggested monthly share amount and medical bill submissions. However, the ShareBox also serves to connect members with each other as their medical needs are being met. By accessing the "Sharing History" tab in their personal ShareBox, members can see how their sharing amount is distributed each month and send a personal message of encouragement to each recipient member. Our blog is filled with testimonials from members who have experienced Christ-honoring care from the Liberty HealthShare community in the midst of crisis, and this feature gives members the opportunity to contribute to that care.
When members join Liberty HealthShare, we understand they must undergo a "paradigm shift" in their engagement with the healthcare system, especially if they have previously used a third-party payer. That's why many of our blog posts are educational in nature - we know it takes some repetition and explanation in order for our members to understand and embrace the healthcare sharing mentality.
We often get emails from members who simply want to say "thank you" to our staff and membership community for the part we have played in their health journey. It's always encouraging to us when we hear from happy members, but it's particularly rewarding when a member has obviously taken the time to understand and live out the stewardship values we hold dear.
This time of year, we tend to see a significant increase in the number of member bills submitted for sharing. Though we cannot be sure of the reason for this, it is possible this is due at least in part to the third-party payer model and deadlines by which many of our members have previously functioned. Whatever the reason, we want to remind our members of a few important factors to consider before they submit more bills at this time of year.
When we’re just kids, running and playing with our friends is second nature. When we're free to choose how and when we will play, we have almost limitless energy, but as we get older, something shifts. Usually, no thanks to gym class, we no longer run because it’s fun, but rather because the teacher standing on the track is using his stopwatch to rate our performance.
At Liberty HealthShare, we view misunderstandings as opportunities for education. For instance, some potential members don't understand the healthcare sharing mentality. Rather than seeing this purely as an obstacle to membership, we choose to see it as an opportunity for education about our unique, member-centered approach to paying for healthcare.
When we hear from members who truly understand healthcare sharing and want to see others learn more, we get excited. We can explain it all day long from our perspective, but the reality is members who share their experiences are exponentially more effective at educating others.
A great example of this is Brittany K. from Michigan, who along with her family joined Liberty HealthShare early last year.
Have you ever noticed how making changes in one area of your life can cause you to reevaluate other, seemingly unrelated areas? Take health, for example. You make the commitment to start eating more healthily and, over time, you notice you have more energy. Greater energy translates into a desire to move more, so you join a gym and start attending classes. Then you recognize that your stress level is more manageable, and you feel so great that you start enjoying your hobbies again, further lowering your stress.
One of the core values held by Liberty HealthShare and encouraged in the lives of our members is the pursuit and maintenance of good health. This is because first and foremost, as a Christian ministry, we believe our bodies are temples we've been given to steward. Secondly, as a cost-sharing ministry, we prioritize health so that our members can fulfill their voluntary commitment to be there and share in eligible medical costs, especially in times of crisis.
Chris V., (pictured left with his wife Annie) lives in Arizona, and he and his family joined Liberty HealthShare last year. As a healthy family who was invested in community, health, and healing, they determined Liberty HealthShare was aligned with their beliefs and ultimately decided membership was for them. That decision was put to the test only two months after Chris' family joined, when their 14-year-old daughter suffered a hemorrhagic stroke.
The past few years have held some interesting developments in various industries. In the hotel and hospitality arena, for instance, Airbnb has taken the world by storm, putting choice regarding travel into the hands of the consumer. It's no longer the expectation that travel must include a hotel stay and the associated costs you can be guaranteed to incur. Instead, travelers can choose not only the amount they prefer to pay, but also the arrangements, the proximity to their destination, and how much they want to engage with and experience what the particular location has to offer.
Every year during open enrollment, Liberty HealthShare experiences even greater and faster growth than normal. Although we are not bound by this enrollment season, many Americans choose to join us at that time. This year was no exception to the rule, so we know a good number of you are new or relatively new members. If you are just joining us, no doubt you have some questions about the way membership works, how sharing is accomplished, and other concepts related to Liberty HealthShare.