Eight Ways to Opt Out of Obamacare

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Eight Ways to Opt Out of Obamacare

Post by editor » Thu Dec 26, 2013 10:10 pm

I just read the following article on breitbart.com. It is interesting to me particularly because of the paragraph marked "8", which talks about a "Healthcare Bluebook", and goes on to say that "chargemaster" prices are typically five times higher than patients really need to pay. This is what I've been saying for more than ten years, in my book How to Survive Hospital Costs Without Insurance.

Eight Ways to Opt Out of Obamacare
by Dr. Susan Berry

(This article appears at: http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government ... -ObamaCare)

With the deadline to sign up for Obamacare having come and gone, many Americans have decided to “opt out” of President Obama’s signature health care reform law, choosing instead to pay the $95 penalty for sidestepping the individual mandate.

“For many Americans opting out of Obamacare is the best decision they can make, but it's important that they do it the right way—just refusing to buy health insurance and not having another way to pay for catastrophic medical expenses is a mistake,” Sean Parnell, author of the newly-released The Self-Pay Patient, told Breitbart News. “People who want to opt out should be looking at alternatives to conventional health insurance, such as joining a health care sharing ministry or purchasing a fixed benefits policy."

Parnell also strongly advises Americans against opting out and simply paying the “list” price for medical visits and prescription drugs without shopping around, or by relying solely on the local hospital emergency room for routine medical care.

“This approach leaves people who opt out vulnerable to sky-high medical expenses at inflated ‘list’ or ‘chargemaster’ rates, and can result in an inability to obtain needed care because of cost,” Parnell writes on his blog, selfpaypatient.com.

Instead, Parnell recommends the following eight options for those who have opted out of ObamaCare:

1. Join a health care sharing ministry, which are voluntary, charitable membership organizations that share medical expenses among the membership.

Parnell states that Samaritan Ministries, Christian Healthcare Ministries, and Christian Care Ministry are open to practicing Christians, while Liberty HealthShare is open to those who are committed to religious liberty.

Healthcare sharing ministries “operate entirely outside of ObamaCare’s regulations, and typically offer benefits for about half the cost of similar health insurance,” says Parnell. “Members are also exempt from having to pay the tax for being uninsured.”

2. Purchase a short-term health insurance policy.

“These policies usually last between one and 11 months and are not regulated under ObamaCare, and, therefore, don’t offer the same high level of benefits that can drive up costs,” writes Parnell.

3. Buy alternative insurance plans such as fixed-benefit, critical illness, or accident insurance.

“These policies pay cash in the event you are diagnosed with cancer, spend a night in the hospital, or need some other medical treatment,” Parnell says. “They cost a fraction of what health insurance costs under ObamaCare, and by giving you cash directly you aren’t locked in to any particular provider network.”

Parnell also recommends maxing out medical and uninsured/underinsured driver coverage amounts under an auto insurance policy, which can help pay for medical bills in the event of injury in an auto accident.

Once major medical insurance is arranged, Parnell suggests shopping around for health care providers and services.

4. Visit cash-only doctors and retail health clinics for primary care. If you usually visit a doctor more than a couple times per year, consider joining a direct primary care practice which will give you access to nearly unlimited primary care for a modest monthly fee.

5. Sign up for a telemedicine service—lower-cost options in which doctors treat relatively simple medical issues via phone calls, email, or a video connection. Telemedicine especially works well, Parnell says, for common injuries, conditions, and illnesses.

6. Use generic prescription drugs whenever possible, and compare prices between pharmacies. Less expensive options are sometimes available at large chain pharmacies such as Walmart and CVS, and online sites such as GoodRx.com and WeRx.org allow patients to view the best deals on medications.

7. For surgery, Parnell recommends going to a facility that offers up-front “package” prices for self-pay patients, such as the Surgery Center of Oklahoma and Regency Healthcare, where prices are typically much less than what is charged at most hospitals. In addition, sites such as MediBid, where doctors bid on providing your surgery or treatment, will often yield substantially less expensive costs coupled with high quality medical care. Yet another option is to become a medical tourist.

8. When a hospital visit becomes necessary, Parnell suggests working with a medical bill negotiation service to get the best price available rather than accept the wildly inflated “chargemaster” prices, usually three to five times more than what insurers pay for the same service or treatment. Patients who wish to negotiate on their own will likely need to put in a significant amount of time and effort, but can use the Healthcare Blue Book or Pricing Healthcare as a starting point to help them find out what insurers are paying for medical services.

“Many Americans say they would prefer free market healthcare, and they don't have to wait for Congress to repeal, replace, or reform Obamacare to have that,” Parnell told Breitbart News.

“Simply by opting out and doing things like visiting cash-only doctors, becoming a medical tourist, shopping around for the best prices on prescription drugs, and obtaining an alternative type of coverage they can enjoy all the benefits of free market healthcare today including access to affordable, quality care and getting government and insurance company bureaucrats out of the doctor-patient relationship.”
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Re: Eight Ways to Opt Out of Obamacare

Post by notmartha » Thu Jan 02, 2014 1:05 pm

Another way to opt out is by learning to manage most of your healthcare needs at home. Here are some public domain books that may help with that endeavor:

Herbal Remedies

Herbal Simples Approved for Modern Uses of Cure by William Thomas Fernie
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/19352
Interesting and informative book from 1897 about Old World cures using one ingredient (simple). Identifies and gives uses for hundreds of individual herbs.

The Old English Herbals by Eleanour Sinclair Rohde
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/33654
Originally published in 1922, this book is more or less a history of various herbalist philosophies. It includes some plant lore and interesting tidbits.

Food Remedies by Florence Daniel (1908)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/18487
Facts about foods and their medicinal uses

Ginseng and Other Medicinal Plants by A. R. Harding (1908)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/34570
A Book of Valuable Information for Growers as Well as Collectors of Medicinal Roots, Barks, Leaves, Etc.

General Old Time (common sense) Prevention and Remedies

New, Old, and Forgotten Remedies: Papers by Many Writers by Edward Pollock Anshutz (1900)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/38757

Mother's Remedies by Thomas Jefferson Ritter
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/17439

Old-Time Makers of Medicine by James J. Walsh (1911)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/20216
Mostly about medieval “cures”

Every Man his own Doctor by R. T. Claridge
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/41292

Medical Common Sense: Applied to the Causes, Prevention and Cure of Chronic Diseases and Unhappiness in Marriage by Edward B. Foote (1868) LINKThe chapter about "The Food We Eat" is especially good.

How and When to Be Your Own Doctor by Isabel A. Moser and Steve Solomon
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/4343
modern book w/ some useful info

This series is from 1907 -

The Home Medical Library, Volume I (of VI)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/27943

The Home Medical Library, Volume II (of VI) by Kenelm Winslow
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/27944

The Home Medical Library, Volume V (of VI) by Kenelm Winslow
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/27947

The People's Common Sense Medical Adviser in Plain English by Ray Vaughn Pierce (1895)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/18467

Books Specific to Women's Health

The Physical Life of Woman: Advice to the Maiden, Wife and Mother by Napheys (1889)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/24001

The Ladies Book of Useful Information by Anonymous (1896)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/26368

What a Young Woman Ought to Know by Mary Wood-Allen (1913)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/28458

Emergency Childbirth by United States. Office of Civil Defense et al. (1970)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/26923

Treatise on the Diseases of Women by Lydia Estes Pinkham (1901)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/29612

The Maternal Management of Children, in Health and Disease by Thomas Bull (1840)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/10383

And some that you don't really want to need, but ...

A Manual of the Operations of Surgery by Joseph Bell (1883)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/24564

On the Antiseptic Principle of the Practice of Surgery by Baron Joseph Lister
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/23968

The Complete Surgeon by Charles Gabriel Le Clerc
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/34157
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Re: Eight Ways to Opt Out of Obamacare

Post by editor » Sat Jan 04, 2014 10:25 am

Very good, notmartha, thank you!
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