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Christian Healthcare Programs

Christian healthcare sharing programs provide Christians with a more flexible and cost-efficient alternative to traditional health insurance plans.

Healthcare is expensive, and many Americans are looking for a way to get high-quality healthcare without breaking the bank in the process.

For people of faith, a Christian healthcare program can be a viable option to save money while still getting needed medical care.

$5,000
An approximate amount that the average household in the US spent per person on healthcare in 2018.

$5,000
An approximate amount that the average household in the US spent per person on healthcare in 2018.

$3,400
An approximate amount that the average American spent for health insurance in 2018, which is twice as much as what they were spending in the mid-1980s. The Dollar figure has been adjusted for inflation to ensure accurate comparisons.

$3,400
An approximate amount that the average American spent for health insurance in 2018, which is twice as much as what they were spending in the mid-1980s. The Dollar figure has been adjusted for inflation to ensure accurate comparisons.

18.4%
Increase in healthcare spending per person in the US from 2014 to 2018.

18.4%
Increase in healthcare spending per person in the US from 2014 to 2018.

$1,242
Out-of-pocket expenses among individuals who depend on employer-based health insurance benefits.

$1,242
Out-of-pocket expenses among individuals who depend on employer-based health insurance benefits.

50%
Approximate amount that healthcare sharing program members can save compared to health insurance plans.

50%
Approximate amount that healthcare sharing program members can save compared to health insurance plans.

(Sources: CNBC)

If you’re looking for an affordable option, it makes sense to learn a few things about Christian healthcare programs, such as:

  • What Christian healthcare programs are
  • How Christian healthcare share programs work
  • How Christian healthcare programs differ from traditional insurance
  • What the benefits of Christian healthcare programs are
  • What type of people are a good fit for a Christian healthcare program
  • What type of medical and prescription benefits are available in a Christian healthcare program

What Are Christian Healthcare Programs?

As you might guess from the name, Christian healthcare programs are non-profit organizations composed of Christians who share medical costs amongst themselves. The goal of these healthcare ministries is to help those with common beliefs to participate In the sharing of healthcare expenses while having access to these funds when the need to pay for medical services arises.

How Christian Healthcare Programs Work

Christian healthcare programs are relatively straightforward in the way they work. Here’s what happens:

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People of faith must apply to be a member of the Christian healthcare share program and meet certain eligibility requirements. (There will be more on that later.)

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Once accepted, members choose the share program that best meets their unique medical and financial needs.

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Members then make a monthly contribution to the program, the amount of which is based on the program chosen.

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Members receive a member ID card that reflects per-visit consult amounts and prescription costs from providers within the contracted networks.

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Before receiving medical services, Members present their member ID to the In-network provider and then pay any per-visit consult fee.

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When a member receives services for an eligible medical need, benefits are applied and a share request is submitted to the membership.

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Eligible medical needs are handled by the program in accordance with specific program guidelines.

How Christian Healthcare Programs Differ from Health Insurance

Christian healthcare programs are not health insurance, and you should never consider them as such. Here are some of the differences between Christian healthcare programs and insurance.

Benefits of Christian Healthcare Programs

Why would a person choose Christian healthcare programs rather than health insurance? There are a number of good reasons to do so. Here are just a few:

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Freedom to choose share costs: Resources in a Christian healthcare program are not pooled in a health insurance pool that is unable to choose members based on lifestyle choices or pre-existing medical conditions. Instead, these programs allow members to have the freedom to select their shared costs with other like-minded members of the same faith.
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Affordable contributions: : Christian healthcare programs are typically much cheaper than traditional health insurance plans. Members can save as much as 50 percent compared to the typical health insurance policy.
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Negotiated Rates with a Contracted Provider Network: Members pay a per-visit consult fee outlined by their specific program – similar to a co-pay in the insurance vernacular.The same applies to prescription benefits – there are specific rates for varying tiers of medications.
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Customized programs: Christian healthcare ministries offer several different programs to accommodate different needs and budgets for members.
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Freedom to choose medical physicians: Christian healthcare programs allow members to choose the type of primary care physician or specialist that they want to see from a large contracted provider network.
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Chance to help out fellow Christians: Members of faith-based medical sharing programs can fulfill their Biblical duty of helping their fellow neighbors.

More Benefits of Christian Healthcare Programs:

1 million+
Number of physicians, hospitals, and medial specialists within the health sharing network in the US.

1 million+
Number of physicians, hospitals, and medial specialists within the health sharing network in the US.

95%
Share of US medical care providers available to Christian Healthcare programs.

95%
Share of US medical care providers available to Christian Healthcare programs.

90%
Share of US pharmacies accepting healthcare sharing programs.

90%
Share of US pharmacies accepting healthcare sharing programs.

(Sources: PBS, PolicyGenius)

How to Tell If Christian Healthcare Programs Are a Good Fit for You

Though US HealthShare can help you find the right fit for your unique circumstances, not everyone who applies to be a member of a Christian healthcare program is accepted. A Christian healthcare program is best suited for people who:

  • Follow Biblical principles in their daily life
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle that is void of dangerous and unhealthy habits
  • Have no chronic, pre-existing health conditions
  • Understand that they are becoming a part of a community of like-minded people who share a common faith
  • Embrace the act of sharing healthcare costs

Christian healthcare programs are especially valuable to members who fall into certain demographics that are not well served with traditional insurance options, such as:

  • Those who are unable or unwilling to pay for traditional health insurance programs
  • Those who are nearing retirement and are in need of a plan that will fill the gap between their employer’s healthcare coverage and Medicare
  • Small business owners who need to provide their small staff with health care coverage
  • Self-employed individuals, consultants or freelancers who do not have access to employer-based health care plans
  • Those who are unable to qualify for subsidies because they earn more than the federal poverty level
  • Those who want to help others while helping themselves

Types of Medical Benefits Offered by Christian Healthcare Programs

You can choose from a variety of different Christian healthcare programs, based on your family’s unique financial and medical needs. Some of the medical expenses commonly considered as eligible medical expenses are:

  • Annual wellness visits and preventive care
  • Visits to your primary care physician or specialists
  • Diagnostic imaging and lab services
  • Urgent care and emergency department visits
  • Hospitalization
  • Physical, occupational, and speech therapy
  • Outpatient hospitalization services
  • Durable medical equipment
  • Pharmacy services – many times high-quality prescription benefits that align with different tiers of drugs
Not all Christian healthcare programs offer benefits for these medical and pharamcy services, so it is important to carefully read and understand what your specific program covers.

USHealthShare specialists can help you find the right program for your needs. contact US HealthShare today to begin a discussion about how we can help you find high-quality care at an affordable cost.

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