How To Afford Healthcare Without Medical Insurance
Medical insurance is handy to have and can be extremely useful when paying for expensive treatment, but not everyone can afford health insurance rates. Fortunately, there are ways to get by without it. Here are some ways that you can afford healthcare without a medical insurance to back you up.
Shop around for medicine
Many people will stick to the familiar brands when it comes to over the counter medicine. However, you can usually save costs by buying from a small brand. Such small brands can usually be just as effective – they’re cheaper only because no-one has heard of them and so they don’t get the demand. If you need these drugs on prescription, you could be saving a lot of money by switching to an independent brand drug. If you’re shopping online, make sure to read reviews first and only buy from trusted sellers. Whilst the bulk of medicine will have been thoroughly tested, there may be some online medicine being sold by dodgy sellers that isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Don’t be afraid to also try holistic medicines.
Take out a health FSA
Many employers of big companies will offer health FSAs to their staff. These are savings accounts in which part of your regular earnings is set aside for medical expenses. These earnings are tax free, and unlike a standard FSA, they aren’t erased with each passing year. FSAs can be used to pay for any form of medical treatment, as well as buying many household first aid supplies. You can even use them to buy corrective eyewear from some opticians. FSAs can be used to fund a whole family making it possible to get the most out of them. You may even be able to keep some FSAs even after leaving an employer.
Join organisations that give you discounts
Some local organisations may offer the perk of a club discount on medical costs. Joining these may not require too much of a commitment other than a few dollars a month. Farm Bureaus for example usually offer medical discounts to members and only require a small fee. Whilst these organisations were set up primarily for farmers, anyone can join and get the benefits. Such organisations may even offer other perks worth taking advantage of such as discounts on insurance or motor costs.
Consider a legal claim
In some circumstances, an injury or illnesses may lie in the fault of someone else who can be rightfully sued. Such a legal claim could help pay for expensive treatment. For example, cancer treatment can be very expensive. In the case of mesothelioma, it could be the result of asbestos exposure from unsafe working conditions. A qualified mesothelioma attorney may be able to win a claim and give you money to pay for treatment such as radiotherapy. Look into your legal rights and see if you can help fund your treatment this way.
CareCredit offers users a special credit card solely for medical expenses. This allows you to pay for expensive treatment using credit which you can pay back at a later stage in smaller instalments. It’s better than a medical loan as you don’t have to pay back interest. Like an FSA, you may also be able to use CareCredit to pay for corrective eyewear or general household medical supplies.
Get help from an advocate
In extreme cases when you cannot afford care, you may be able to seek the help of an advocate. Advocates can help find the cheapest form of treatment for you by negotiating with medical personnel and essentially shopping around for treatment from various hospitals. Only people living under a certain income are eligible to use an advocate for this purpose.
There are some cases in which you may be able to get cheaper healthcare abroad. You generally can’t take advantage of other countries free healthcare systems, however there may be private clinics in these countries that are still relatively cheap in the case of expensive specific treatment. Of course, you will have to budget for the cost of flights too and accommodation of any relatives that you’re travelling with. This could make things more expensive overall, so do some adding up of figures first. As with shopping for medicine, read reviews of private healthcare clinics so that you know you’re getting good quality care.