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Aristos
09-04-2012, 04:43 PM
What do homesteaders do for medical insurance if they do not have employment outside of the homestead? As we try to become more and more self sufficient on our farm, I wonder how I could ever quit my job as a software developer in order to spend more time producing and storing our food. The biggest issue is always the medical insurance. My husband is self employed but I work for a corporation that pays my insurance so I only have to pay for my husband's medical coverage. What do other homesteaders on this forum do about medical insurance?

mozarkian
09-04-2012, 04:59 PM
Without! LOL
We pay out of pocket for my husbands medical care, I dropped off the map of medical care about 10 years ago and choose to be responsible for my own health.

grumble
09-04-2012, 05:19 PM
Wow. Not even a policy for catastrophic coverage? That's gutsy.

KarenBC
09-04-2012, 05:34 PM
With universal basic medical coverage in Canada, if I couldn't afford the $65 monthly Medical Services Plan fee, the provincial govt would pay it - that lets me visit doctors, medical clinics and hospitals for free. It doesn't cover the cost of prescriptions or ambulance service. The medical plan is tied right into income, the tax folks share that info with medical and the bills come out based on that.

Fortunately in my work I have Blue Cross that covers most of the prescription costs, diabetes supplies, ambulance, foot doc visits...but your question is a good one...if I'm not working at my current job - those costs become mine.

mozarkian
09-04-2012, 05:53 PM
Wow. Not even a policy for catastrophic coverage? That's gutsy.

Even know someone who is never sick a day in their life and then they go get a routine check up and the next day they are dying of cancer? What kind of quality of life do you think they have from that point on, even if they get an extra day or two with treatment? Life as they have known it is over.
I KNOW that I can handle my own broken bones, cuts, infections, aches and pains, actually getting pretty good at it. And overall I am healthier today than I was when they wanted to run all those tests on me nearly 10 years ago. I plan to live till the day I die. ;)
Bull kicked me pretty hard on Sunday, DH wanted to take me to the hospital, probably could have milked it for a night or two in the hospital, but I like to sleep in my own bed. Ya know?

grumble
09-04-2012, 06:08 PM
Like I said, you're downright gutsy! I guess hubby can take out your appendix if need be? I wonder about things like getting in a car wreck, and being unconscious when they load you into an ambulance or air-evac you to a hospital for emergency surgery for your ruptured spleen. You never get a chance to refuse the "help." Or to refuse paying for it.

I respect your choice, but wouldn't have the guts to do it myself.

mozarkian
09-04-2012, 06:15 PM
The unconscious - car wreck scenario is the only thing I have little control over, but I do have a recorded health directive and auto insurance with medical coverage so if that happens I can deal with it and retain some control. My DH knows my wishes and I know his. Living is not without risk, but the odds are in my favor.

mozarkian
09-04-2012, 06:18 PM
Oh and I don't have an appendix-- it was taken out when they did a total hysterectomy back in my 20's. So I don't have to worry about him with a steak knife in his clumsy hand. LOL

cinok
09-04-2012, 07:04 PM
Wow. Not even a policy for catastrophic coverage? That's gutsy.

It's called the ER that's why my rates and your rates grumble are so high

grumble
09-04-2012, 07:22 PM
Yeah, I know, but Moz is a buddy of mine, and I don't want to pick a fight with her. <GGG>

mozarkian
09-04-2012, 10:08 PM
Cinok, I GUARANTEE you that I have never taken one penny of assistance, never sought medical care that I didn't pay for (and never will). I have no desire to "retire" and will not be partaking of the social security dollars I have paid in, even if it would be available when I get to that age, which I highly doubt. I am responsible for me. I had a sister that lived her life on the dole and it sickens me to this day. I am responsible for me and wish everyone lived by the same rules. moz

whitehairedidiot
09-05-2012, 08:17 PM
Moz - even tho we have flight nurses and docs in the family...

I'm with you on avoiding the medical monopoly as much as possible. Long story and off-topic here... but the long & short of it, is that a lot of people get too much medical attention - for things they should be able to take care of themselves. I just read recently, that after an earthquake people stood in line at an ER to get bandaids.

BANDAIDS, fer cryin' out loud.

mozarkian
09-05-2012, 10:09 PM
My favorite niece is the Director over the ER at a hospital in my area. The waste she sees would take your breath away. They actually keep a list of people that come in every week to try and get pain meds and have a special procedure to deal with them that doesn't include the meds of choice.

abrickner
09-06-2012, 03:33 AM
I wish more people would take responsibility for their health. Take care of yourself is step one, don't run to the doctor for every little running nose etc.

What did we do before ER's, radiation therapy, the list goes on. I hope to keep going for a long long time but if it is my time I don't want to spend it in the hospital trying to prolong it if I can't keep my quality of life.

I think more families took care of their elders and didn't ship them off or isolate them. Part of the "me" society.

randallhilton
09-06-2012, 05:00 AM
What do homesteaders do for medical insurance if they do not have employment outside of the homestead? As we try to become more and more self sufficient on our farm, I wonder how I could ever quit my job as a software developer in order to spend more time producing and storing our food. The biggest issue is always the medical insurance. My husband is self employed but I work for a corporation that pays my insurance so I only have to pay for my husband's medical coverage. What do other homesteaders on this forum do about medical insurance?

Firstly, a couple of caveats:

1. Your employer is NOT paying for your insurance -- you are. (if you can imagine cutting one end of a blanket off, then sewing onto the other end you will understand how YOU are paying for the "benefit.")

2. The health care industry may well be the biggest scam ever perpetrated on the people -- it will be very challenging to beat the system.

My suggestions:

1. Take personal responsibility for your health. I'm an ambulance EMT in a very busy system (handled I think 14 patients today). I'm conservatively guessing that close to 90% of the people I see have health problems related to poor decisions and lifestyle choices (overweight, improper management of diabetes, ignoring blood pressures, smoking, lack of exercise/stretching, doing stupid stuff, failing to use safety equipment etc.)

2. Get a high deductible ($10,000) major medical policy then become a cash shopper for your health care needs. Personal example: I needed a surgery. The doc quoted a bit over $10,000. That would have met my deductible for the year but that's still $10,000 I would have spent. I told him I was a cash customer because my deductible was so high. Suddenly, the operation is only $4,750.00! Funny thing is that I think he was happier with the check than with having to deal with the insurance company.

We've been "covered" and "bare" at several points in our life. When "covered," a trip to the doc requires $450 worth of tests and some high dollar meds. When "bare' it's the price of an office visit and, maybe, a hundred buck lab fee. A bag of sample meds is sometimes part of the deal.

Now, if you're the sort that has to visit the doc often -- allergies, chronic conditions etc. -- then you probably need to stay close to town. The rural life is not for you.

those are just some idea. I hope they stir up your deeper thinker processes.

cinok
09-06-2012, 09:21 AM
I agree with a major plan at the minimum we have 2 teenage boys who play HS football my wife has a decent plan through here employer its nowhere new perfect but it covers the basic but the deductible is high. Funny thing is her beniefts at most of her employers have been crappy and she was a ER nurse and now is a flight nurse.
The thing is you say you can handle most things I say bs to that. Unless u have a DNR for a basic heart stack or stroke which are both treatable the bill could be anywhere from 10 grand and up. For my wifes bird to take off its 20 grand to fly someone from a basic ER to a hospital with a cath lab

mozarkian
09-06-2012, 10:58 AM
Cinok, sending you a pm. moz

Aristos
09-09-2012, 01:46 AM
Firstly, a couple of caveats:

1. Your employer is NOT paying for your insurance -- you are. (if you can imagine cutting one end of a blanket off, then sewing onto the other end you will understand how YOU are paying for the "benefit.")

2. The health care industry may well be the biggest scam ever perpetrated on the people -- it will be very challenging to beat the system.

My suggestions:

1. Take personal responsibility for your health. I'm an ambulance EMT in a very busy system (handled I think 14 patients today). I'm conservatively guessing that close to 90% of the people I see have health problems related to poor decisions and lifestyle choices (overweight, improper management of diabetes, ignoring blood pressures, smoking, lack of exercise/stretching, doing stupid stuff, failing to use safety equipment etc.)

2. Get a high deductible ($10,000) major medical policy then become a cash shopper for your health care needs. Personal example: I needed a surgery. The doc quoted a bit over $10,000. That would have met my deductible for the year but that's still $10,000 I would have spent. I told him I was a cash customer because my deductible was so high. Suddenly, the operation is only $4,750.00! Funny thing is that I think he was happier with the check than with having to deal with the insurance company.

We've been "covered" and "bare" at several points in our life. When "covered," a trip to the doc requires $450 worth of tests and some high dollar meds. When "bare' it's the price of an office visit and, maybe, a hundred buck lab fee. A bag of sample meds is sometimes part of the deal.

Now, if you're the sort that has to visit the doc often -- allergies, chronic conditions etc. -- then you probably need to stay close to town. The rural life is not for you.

those are just some idea. I hope they stir up your deeper thinker processes.


Thanks for these suggestions. I like the cash shopper idea. We have been lucky ( or maybe it is our lifestyle) to not have to visit the doctor more than once or twice a year, so it does seem like we pay in a lot more for medical insurance than we ever get out of it. Randalhilton, regarding becoming a cash shopper for medical services, how did you handle the hospital fees for your surgery, or was it done in the doctor's office instead. I can understand how a doctor would discount his services to avoid dealing with insurance claims, but I am not sure a person could negotiate with a hospital on a cash basis. Any one have experience with that situation.

grumble
09-09-2012, 02:15 PM
Randall, that makes a lot of sense. Maybe it's a regional thing here, but for me, it doesn't work. What I see is that cash patients get charged out the yazoo, while insurance patients get the good rates.

For example, if I walk in and a doc does some procedure, he'll charge me say, $150. He charges the same amount to the insurance company, but the insurance says, "no, we'll allow a charge of $26, we (insurance) will pay $22, and the patient's portion is $4." And the doc says, "ok, good enough."

Now, if the doc would charge ME $26 for the procedure, I'd cancel the insurance and pay that amount. But no, if I pay the bill myself, the charge is $150, non-negotiable.

Maybe it's because it's in a small town, or maybe it's state laws, I don't know. But here, cash patients pay through the nose.

kfander
09-09-2012, 07:03 PM
Even know someone who is never sick a day in their life and then they go get a routine check up and the next day they are dying of cancer? What kind of quality of life do you think they have from that point on, even if they get an extra day or two with treatment? Life as they have known it is over.

Cancer is no longer an automatic death sentence, at least not in many cases. I am still only a year away and so am certainly not in the clear, but I was treated for cancer just last summer. I have some problems now that I didn't have before the diagnosis, the largest of which stems from complications from the biopsy rather than the cancer itself or the treatment, but I am otherwise okay. Had I not paid into a cancer policy, although I did not by any means intend to get cancer at the time that I signed up for it, I would never be able to dig myself out of the financial hole. As it is, my treatment is complete and I have no outstanding bills from the treatment.

That said, I can surely understand how someone might look into a cancer policy as being a no-win situation. Unless you get cancer, you will be left feeling that you have been cheated out of your money, and of course no one wants either to have cancer or to be cheated out of money.

kfander
09-09-2012, 07:08 PM
I'm an ambulance EMT in a very busy system (handled I think 14 patients today).

I'm a former Texas EMT myself, having spent more than twenty years as an EMT-B, EMT-SS (now Intermediate), and EMT-Paramedic, EMS Instructor, and EMS Coordinator in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas.

HowdyDo
10-17-2012, 09:25 PM
I'm an insurance agent in Oregon, licensed to sell all, including Life/Health.
A couple of years ago, I cancelled our health insurance for hubby and me. (we have no kids)
Both of us are in excellent health. Yes, I attribute that to lifestyle and conscious decision making.
My experience tells me that, even if you do end up paying full price for visits, YOU, the patient gets to make the important decisions about yourself. Everyday, the best carriers are trimming their policy forms and expanding exclusions.
I have been contributing what used to be my monthly premiums to a savings account for medical emergencies.
I am at a loss when folks call my office wondering where to turn next.
Either they have been laid off; the employer cancelled the benefit; or their income has increased to push them out of the state run system.
I have no answers, and don't see any coming down the pike either. There is nowhere to go.
These exchanges coming about in 2014 don't hold anything different for us than what already exists, really.
Geez, when I look at this, I wonder: what happens now?
I guess I can't be much help...

bookwormom
10-19-2012, 09:20 PM
Some of you on here will remember Scott and Helen Nearing. they did not have insurance for 50 or so years, and Scott died at 100 because he thought it was time to call it a day and he quit eating. Helen was close to that age when she died. They enjoyed really good health and attributed it to their lifestyle.