What do people do if they can’t pay for health insurance?

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Asked May 16, 2011

1 Answer

In tough economic times, insurance, even health coverage, may become a burden on segments of the population. People who have been laid off have the option of continuing coverage through COBRA, but the costs of coverage may be higher than many can afford.

Check to see if you qualify for government-sponsored insurance through Medicare. Some Medicare plans are free to qualified applicants, while others are available at greatly reduced costs. The problem with Medicare is that it is focused on women and children, and may not provide optimum coverage for everyone.

Take steps to make yourself cheaper to insure. Quit smoking and start a regular exercise routine. Adopt a healthy diet. Prevention is one of the best ways to reduce healthcare, and taking steps to protect the health of you and your family will result in lower healthcare costs and greater insurability at a fair price. You may also find that local medical groups and hospitals offer free clinics or training programs such as cholesterol and diabetes awareness that can intercept major health issues before they become critical.

Even if you cannot afford to pay for full health insurance coverage, be sure to purchase catastrophic illness coverage. This type of coverage is applied to serious illnesses such as cancer, diabetes and other internal afflictions. You may not be covered for regular doctor visits, but you won't be left wanting when critical care is required. If full health insurance is not in your budget, look around for plans that offer you as much protection as you are able to afford. Prescription assistance, for instance, is not a health insurance replacement but it can save thousands of dollars in medical expenses that would otherwise be out of pocket costs.

Answered May 16, 2011 by Anonymous

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