Christian Healthcare Ministries: Cost-sharing Help with Medical Bills
Did you try to sign up for health care insurance this month for yourself or for a family member, and then gave up? Perhaps you found that the plans you looked at for help with medical bills were just too expensive for your budget, or maybe the whole process of signing up online was just too confusing for you. For whatever reason, you now find yourself with no health care insurance coverage, and you will soon find that there will be tax consequences because of that choice.
If you are still looking for help with medical bills, we would like to recommend a great alternative to you. We belong to a health care cost sharing ministry called Christian Healthcare Ministries which is located in Barberton, Ohio. In operation since 1981, CHM is a Christian voluntary ministry in which members share the cost of medical bills, including maternity bills, and bills for treatment of a catastrophic illness. Members come from all fifty states.
Christian Healthcare Ministries is a health cost sharing ministry that is included as an acceptable option in the U.S. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (the PPACA, more commonly known as Obamacare. We think that it is better than any conventional health insurance we have seen.
Members must meet certain requirements. To be CHM members, participating adults must be Christians living by biblical principles, including abstaining from the use of tobacco and the illegal use of drugs (1 Corinthians 6:19-20), following biblical teaching on the use of alcohol, and attending group worship regularly if health permits (Hebrews 10:25). There are no restrictions based on age, weight, geographic location or health history. There is not a requirement of being a member of any particular church denomination.
There are many good features of CHM. First, new members are not rejected if they have a health condition and CHM does not set payment rates on a member’s age, health status, or geographic location. It does not raise your rates if you come down with an illness that is expensive to treat, nor will your membership be cancelled for that reason. CHM even has programs for members who have pre-existing conditions.
No, this is not “insurance” and does not work the way most insurance companies work. CHM is defined as a cost-sharing ministry under the ACA law. Members help with medical bills of fellow members voluntarily through making monthly financial gift of pre-set amounts.
There are three levels, Gold, Silver and Bronze. Each have different rates and coverages. We think you will be surprised at how affordable their rates are. Plus, the optional Brothers’ Keeper program provides additional cost support in situations of catastrophic illness.
Members are asked to encourage those who are sick with cards and prayers when they receive a monthly prayer request card. There is a monthly newsletter with a prayer request page, letters from members, and informative articles. The application for membership is available online at the website www.chm.org or paper applications can be requested by phoning 1-800-791-6225.
We were looking for help with medical bills in 1990 when we joined CHM. We have been pleased with their customer service, help in reducing medical bills, and their professional efficiency. We believe that CHM lives up to high expectations of members because they really care about their members and have high standards of integrity.
If you’re looking for help, we invite you to see if Christian Healthcare Ministries could be just what you need.