Christians Flock to Groups That Help Members Pay Medical Bills


SAN ANTONIO — When Chris Doyle learned that his health insurance deductible would climb to $10,000 last year, he and his wife, both evangelical Christians, “spent a couple weeks just praying,” he said.

Then they opted out of insurance altogether, joining something called a health care sharing ministry, which requires members to help cover one another’s major medical costs as they come up.

While such nonprofit ministries have been around for decades, interest in them has grown since the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, largely because the law exempts members from the requirement to have health insurance or pay a yearly fine.


A family I know has coverage such as this. They love it.


I like this idea, it’s very collectivist and should be encouraged.

For many people it simply won’t work though. They don’t take people with pre-existing conditions. My wife’s medication is about $16,000 a year and that’s only one medicine. It doesn’t include things like regular visits, specialist visits, other meds, MRI’s, etc. There’s no way this would be workable in that type of set up.


That’s the problem I have with them, as well.


I am so happy that hubby and I are Veterans. Our medical needs are covered by the Veterans Administration.


Is it true that some of these plans require one to sign a Profession of Faith? That would make me very uncomfortable should it be “bible based.”


There’s one called CMF Curo geared for Catholics.


The wife and I use one and find it fine (though we rarely use it). One of the greatest benefits, is that because it is not insurance, we tell providers we don’t have insurance and are usually charged what I would guess is the reimbursement rate which often is $50-$60 for an office visit.

As stated though, we don’t have a huge amount of prescription cost.


The wife and I use one. It’s good. As mentioned it doesn’t cover prescriptions, so if we had a large number, we would have to find a prescription plan.

The statement of faith, from what I remember is nothing any Trinitarian Christian could not in good conscience sign.


This Christian Healthcare Ministries website says:

Active vs. maintenance: We distinguish between pre-existing conditions in “active” treatment and “maintenance” treatment. Medical bills cannot be shared if, at the time you join CHM, the bills are for pre-existing conditions that are actively undergoing treatment other than with maintenance (routine) medications. After the incident is over and your doctor states that you are on a maintenance treatment regimen, bills for any new incident related to the pre-existing illness are eligible for sharing according to the information below.


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