Today we're going to break down what the term "Christian Health Insurance" really means. As we'll see, it's actually a Christian alternative to health insurance. Then we'll talk about how it works.
What is Christian Health Insurance?
Christian health insurance is Christian because it only allows Christians to join. In the application process, you will be asked about your faith, and must give your word about your religious beliefs and church attendance. It is based on a system of trust.
One of the reasons why this trust is so important is because the members themselves vote -- on an annual basis -- exactly what medical expenses should be eligible under the program. And ones pertaining to un-Christian behavior, such as drug rehab or pregnancy out of wedlock, are not covered.
Additionally, you are given the opportunity to send messages of support and prayer for those in the program your monthly payments are benefiting. And conversely, you will receive a network of support and prayer when you need it.
So that is the religious component of Christian Health Insurance. Now let's look at the insurance component.
Is it Really Insurance?
Healthcare sharing ministries do not act like insurance companies that have armies of actuaries calculating how high premiums must be to ensure sufficient profit. They are not subject to the same intensive regulations whose costs are ultimately passed on to consumer. And nor do they make the same guarantees of payment.
Instead, they have a network of members who pay each other's medical bills. The system functions very similarly to conventional insurance. You will pay a fixed monthly amount, which depends on your age, health, deductible, and how many are in your family. This amount acts like the premium.
You will pay a certain amount for each doctor or emergency room visit. This amount acts like the copay.
You will only have your medical bills paid once you have already spent a certain amount in the year. This amount acts like the deductible.
For more details on exactly how one healthcare sharing ministry works, feel free to look at our MediShare review, which goes into more detail.