Friday, November 21, 2008

High Cost Of Health Care

In the United States today there are millions of people without health insurance. As the insurance companies want to make a higher and higher profit it keeps the majority of uninsured people from getting health insurance due to the costs. Many businesses have had to either drop the health insurance or make the deductibles in the range of $1000, $5,000 or even as high as $10,000 and place more of the cost on the employee.

If you can place pre-tax money into a health savings account to help pay for your medical care this can help alleviate some of the strain of medical care. Many people do not understand how these medical savings accounts work. You have to estimate your medical care cost at the beginning on your “open season” at work which allows you to make changes to your benefits.

What to be careful about is estimating too high as if you do not use everything by the end of the calendar year you lose this money. Another aspect to keep in mind with this type of plan is that the money is taken out of your paycheck each month where your employer has divided the total amount, you requested for payment for your medical bills, by the total number of paychecks you will receive in a year.

You also have to usually have to pay for your co-pay/co-insurance or deductible first and you get reimbursed for the cost. This type of plan will lower your federal and state taxes based on your income.

Does the average individual have other options? If you are in financial hardship, let your physician know personally, as the office staff may or may not have the ability to give you a discount after filling out paperwork to justify the hardship. Do not be embarrassed to ask for help, as many providers will work with you, if you ask.

If you do not have health insurance or have a very high deductible and need medications, find out the name of the medication manufacturer from your pharmacy and look the company up online, as many of these companies have free or discount medication available. Ask all of your physicians for samples of medications. There are options that can help pay for medical care if you just ask for help.

Content Submitted by czsissom on The Frugal Life Forums.

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