The cost of health insurance has consistently been on the rise in the last few years. This has resulted in the search for more cost-effective alternatives by individuals and businesses. An alternative that has become quite popular in recent years is community-driven medical cost-sharing membership programs. Here’s how community-driven medical cost-sharing programs work and the elements that differentiate them from conventional medical insurance plans.
Community-driven medical cost-sharing memberships tend to be faith-based. They are aimed at facilitating elective cost-sharing among members for specific medical expenses. These are usually registered as either non-profit or charitable organizations. Members are required to make monthly contributions that are then allocated to other members with medical expenses. This idea is based on the premise that people with similar values and beliefs have the ability to help each other, making it a more personable alternative to conventional medical insurance. One of the unique attributes of Scoop Health is that anyone can join, regardless of their beliefs.
The Cost Benefits
One of the biggest appeals of community-driven medical cost-sharing is that it is cheaper than conventional medical insurance. Members of cost-sharing are encouraged to make healthier choices in terms of their lifestyles, and this enables them to have access to the best medical services at a fraction of the monthly cost. Furthermore, members are provided with the option of selecting their own health practitioners, as opposed to having to stick to recommendations that are sometimes provided by conventional health insurance companies.
In terms of the costs involved, members are usually required to pay an initial unshareable amount (IUA), which can be as low as $500 based on the type of membership that they have selected. Thereafter, members are required to pay a monthly fixed amount, which is often referred to as a “share amount” or a “family share amount”. From the perspective of businesses looking to secure community-driven medical cost-sharing for their employees, offering this option to your employees means that they would have much less to pay on a monthly basis.
A Community That Provides
The sense of community within community-driven medical cost-sharing is key to the success of these types of health insurance alternatives. These alternatives are founded on principles of helping each other within the community during times of need, whether the assistance is required as a result of an accident or illness-related issue. Members submit their requests and, in most cases, once the committee has approved the legitimacy of the claim, the amount is paid to the service provider. Furthermore, community-driven medical cost-sharing programs are usually classified as preferred provider organizations (PPO), meaning that they receive pre-negotiated rates from the service providers in their network. This could mean a further reduction in the costs incurred by the member. Additionally, community-driven medical cost-sharing programs, like the one offered by Scoop Health, allow patients to pay for medical expenses upfront, meaning that the patient is also able to receive discounts from service providers for being a cash-pay patient.
As the programs are founded on the basis of community, the people who are members tend to share similar beliefs and lifestyles. Therefore, the premise is that, by encouraging members to maintain healthy lifestyles that do not involve health-compromising activities (such as drinking and smoking), they can keep costs low, as leading a healthy lifestyle can reduce the likelihood of members developing illnesses. This sense of community provides the members with the comfort that they are sharing their medical costs with like-minded individuals.
Unlike traditional health insurance, community-driven medical cost-sharing programs tend to include most pre-existing conditions, depending on the company and membership selected. One of the ways in which pre-existing conditions are paid for in community-driven medical cost-sharing memberships is that members pay for the condition in the first year, but then share a portion of the cost in subsequent years. However, it is important to check with the specific program you are considering to ensure that your pre-existing condition is catered for and how you need to approach sharing the costs.
The basis of community-driven medical cost-sharing is the ability to rely on members of the program when medical needs arise. Medical expenses that result from an accident or illness are referred to as “needs”. There is security in knowing that there is a financial support system available in order to assist you in your time of distress. Furthermore, the ability to have the freedom to select your own medical practitioner means that you are able to receive care from individuals that you trust without having to worry about any potential restrictive policies that may limit your ability to pay for their services after your medical needs have been attended to. You won’t need to worry about any hidden red tape when it comes to making choices about your health and the health of your family.
The Scoop Health Community + Your Community
Scoop Health is a community-driven medical cost-sharing scheme that is powered by Sedera. We encourage our members to pursue healthy lifestyles and, in so doing, are able to provide high-quality healthcare options to our members at a fraction of the price. The community-driven medical cost-sharing industry has over one million members nationwide, with over one billion dollars in sharing. The members of our community can pay an initial unshareable amount of as little as $500 and are able to have their costs fully taken care of by the community after their third medical need (or fifth in the case of a family). As an employer, you will have peace of mind in knowing that your employees will be taken care of at a lower cost to them and, due to their lifestyle choices and comprehensive medical cost-sharing, you will have a healthier workforce. This will result in increased productivity for your organization, and a workforce that doesn’t have to worry about something as basic as medical expenses.
Allow us and your community to take care of you.
Want to learn more? Sign up for our free webinar, where we will answer your questions and explain more about how Scoop Health can benefit you.