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The High Costs Of Being Uninsured

Sep 8, 2008
Health Insurance has become one of the biggest monthly expenses for most people in this country. The problem has become so big, that many people are forced to go without health insurance because they cannot afford it. That, in turn, has created a larger societal problem due to increased emergency care costs and unreimbursed coverage at medical facilities. Today, there are literally millions of ordinary people who are living without medical insurance.

There are many reasons people go without health insurance. Many are not necessarily poor, but the costs have risen so drastically that even employed people may not be able to afford basic health coverage. This is particularly true for those who do not have higher education or work part-time jobs where no health insurance is offered by their employer.

People who cannot get insurance through their employer have to look to other means of getting health insurance, most likely through an independent insurance company. In many cases, this type of insurance can turn out to be more expensive than they can afford, depending on age, medical history, and other risk factors. Consequently, many of these people and their families are forced to go without health coverage.

It is not out of the ordinary for health insurance premiums to run several hundred dollars a month for full family coverage. For most people, this represents a fairly large percentage of the monthly income for that family. This forces the family to choose between meeting other basic living expenses and health insurance coverage. When a choice has to be made between rent or groceries and health insurance, it's pretty easy to see which will win out, particularly if there are no current health problems in the family.

Without health insurance coverage, many people resort to using the emergency room as their doctor's office. In this country, community hospitals must accept patients without insurance. All that is necessary is a promise to pay the bill when it comes due. All too often, this does not happen because the patient is simply unable to meet the obligation.

Because there are so many unpaid bills, hospitals are generally forced to raise their fees to offset these costs. These increased fees are then passed on to patients that do have insurance. Most insurance companies will only pay a certain percentage of a hospital stay, while the rest of the bill is passed on to the patient to pay out of pocket. So, even after the insurance company pays their portion of the bill, the insured patient may have a substantial amount of money to pay out of pocket.

People without health insurance often wait until it is absolutely necessary to begin treatment of a health condition. This often results in longer and more costly treatment than would have otherwise been required if the same patient had had access to medical treatment earlier. Again, lack of basic health insurance coverage has caused the cost of medical treatment to be higher than it should, which in turn raises the cost of health coverage for everyone.

Not having health insurance ultimately costs more than it would to have procured the insurance in the first place. For the individual, it usually results in longer, more serious medical conditions, higher out of pocket costs, and sometimes death due to lack of treatment. For society, lack of insurance results in higher costs for everyone. There is no doubt that something needs to be done to ensure people have access to high quality health care in a way that is affordable.
About the Author
For more information on how to find affordable dental and health insurance , including individual health insurance plans , be sure and visit http://www.healthinsurancebazaar.com today.
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