How Does One Survive Without Health Insurance?

By Cathy Wilson Posted in Health Insurance News

Having No Health Insurance

If you have no insurance and become sick, paying for your medical bills may well bankrupt you. While some hospitals will work out payment plans, many times they’ll only break up the bill into a few payments. They’re not likely to extend months or years of payments to you. If you don’t pay on time, they’ll submit the account to a debt collector who will hound you relentlessly for payment.

Actual Cost Of Medical Procedures And Treatments

The cost of many medical procedures, treatments or preventative health care is shocking. Just look at what things cost on average (based on a 2005 survey) if you don’t have insurance.

  • Amputation – $52,000
  • Aortic resection – $77,000
  • Appendectomy – $20,000
  • Breast biopsy – $29,000
  • Broken arm – $23,000 (includes x-rays, setting the bone, cast)
  • Broken leg – $26,000 (includes x-rays, setting the bone, cast)
  • C-Section – $13,000
  • CAT scan – $16,000
  • Chemotherapy – $31,000
  • Chest X-ray – $16,000
  • Colonoscopy – $23,000
  • Echocardiogram – $22,000
  • GI – $23,000
  • Heart valve surgery – $133,000
  • Hip replacement – $41,000
  • Kidney transplant – $121,000
  • Labor & Delivery – $8,000
  • Mammogram – $15,000
  • Mastectomy – $20,000
  • MRI – $23,0000
  • Ultrasound – $16,000

If you did break your arm and you lack health insurance, could you afford to have it treated without selling your home or becoming seriously in debt? That’s why it is so important to have health insurance.

High Cost Of Health Insurance

Obviously, many families simply cannot afford health insurance and take the risk of injury or sickness. If you are among them, there are ways to save.

Look for immediate-care clinics. They are usually less expensive than hospitals and traditional medical practices. Another option is to talk to a doctor about your situation and see if you can get them to set up a payment plan or offer suggestions on where you can get the medical treatment you need.

If the patient is a child, there are usually dozens of state programs that can help. Talk to a patient advocate for assistance. Patient advocates are in most hospitals and act as a negotiator between the hospital’s billing department, patients and the doctors. They are extremely helpful if you lack health insurance.

Check with your state to see if they offer a state-run health care program. Many do. You’ll still have to pay part of your bill, but it won’t be as expensive as it will be without insurance.

Related posts:

  1. Why Is Health Insurance So Important?
  2. How Does The Co-Insurance Clause In My Health Insurance Plan Work?
  3. What Is An IPA For Health Insurance?
  4. Health Care Reform: Goodbye To Doctor-Patient Relationships?
  5. What Does The Term Rider Mean For Low Cost Health Insurance?

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