Health Insurance: Can’t Afford to Live With It, Can’t Afford to Live Without It

Is Health Insurance Out of the Question for the Self-Employed and Un-Employed?

The cost of health insurance is enough to kill you. If you’ve ever gotten a quote for private health insurance, you know what I mean. The sticker shock itself is enough to give you a heart attack. So what is a self-employed individual or an un-employed individual to do? Are you destined to live without health insurance coverage, playing Russian roulette with your health and your financial security?

The Statistics are Startling

If you look at the statistics of health insurance, it doesn’t paint a pretty picture. More than five million fewer workers are covered by an employer’s health insurance plan than were covered in 2001. In 2003 health insurance premiums increased by 13.9 percent and in 2004 they increased by 11.2 percent. So with fewer and fewer people being covered by employer’s health insurance plans and the constant increase in health insurance costs, what’s a consumer to do?

Invest Time and Energy

If there’s one thing you’re going to invest time and energy in, it should be your health insurance coverage. If you go without any health insurance at all, you’re playing a game you can’t afford to lose. You may think you can’t afford any health insurance at all, but you may be surprised at what you find if you take the time to look.

Not all health insurance policies are created equal. Perhaps you can’t afford a top-of-the-line health insurance policy. That doesn’t mean you should forego health insurance altogether. Get a quote on multiple health insurance policies and see which policy you can afford and go with that one.

If you just can’t afford any health insurance at all, you may want to check with the state you live in. Many states offer government-subsidized health insurance policies and you may be able to get a policy for little to no money at all through your state if your income and family situation qualifies you.

Buyer Beware

When you do check out health insurance policies, make sure you don’t fall for one of those discount programs that disguise themselves as insurance programs. Unless you’re getting a government-subsidized policy, you’re not going to get health insurance for $20 a month.