Affordable Medical Cost Sharing Plan Choices
A compromise that helped get the Affordable Care Act enacted was the allowance of alternative healthcare plans. Cost-sharing plans are not insurance. The idea is that you enter the plan and pay a certain amount towards the medical needs of other members. By paying a monthly share amount one becomes eligible to have one's own medical needs covered should anything happen that might cause one to need medical services.
Medi-share is a prominent example of alternative healthcare plans. It's official non-profit 501(c)(3) name is Christian Care Ministry Inc. To join Medi-Share one must agree with their statement of faith, which is a recitation of Christian dogma. Potential members must agree not to use illegal drugs or use legal drugs to excess. Members must not smoke or have sex outside of the covenant of marriage. If one is accepted into Medi-Share, monthly share payments are based on the level of coverage wanted and whether or not one is willing to undergo a health check.
An Austin Texas-based 501(c)(3) called Sedera is a secular approach to the same thing. Sedera also expects healthy lifestyle choices among its members. Sedera is innovative in attempting to control health care costs. Their second opinion program to makes certain major health care choices are validated by a second opinion. Sedera insists on negotiating down excessive health costs before implementing full sharing. If one fails to negotiate with one's doctor or hospital a disallows Sedera from doing so, Sedera's sharing reimbursement could be cut by 50 percent.
Shared Health Alliance (SHA) has a tiered approach to health care. SHA has a cheap preventative care program with low out of pocket expenses. It has a more expensive program that extends care to non-preventive medical expenses, also with low out of pocket costs. SHA has a low-cost prescription program that covers 80 percent of generic drugs that are priced at $10 or less.
Due to the nature of SHA's programs It may be a wise decision to combine SHA cost-sharing with its relatively low member responsibility payments with a plan like Medi-Share that expects members to pay for a greater portion of their own care. Those of a more secular persuasion may see the benefits of combining SHA with Sedera who may do a better job of controlling health care costs. Combining plans also means combining resources that may be used to pay medical expenses.