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Affording healthcare when you’re uninsured

Healthcare can be expensive. While most Americans are covered by medical insurance, it’s believed that 25.7 million people in the U.S. aren’t. When a medical emergency arises, it’s often too late to look for insurance. There are however other ways in which you can make medical expenses affordable if you’re uninsured.

Shop around for treatment

Providing that you don’t need urgent medical attention, you may be able to shop around for treatment. Different hospitals and different doctors charge different fees. By making a few calls and getting a few quotes, you can save money by finding the cheapest option. Some people travel far and wide to save money on treatment – while you may pay a lot of money to travel, you could still save money when it comes to expensive treatment like surgery. Some states also have free clinics for those on a low income.

Pay in advance

A lot of hospitals and clinics allow patients to pay in advance. This can sometimes result in a discount, as well as the option to break up the cost into installments. Paying in advance may not be an option for emergency treatment, but could be ideal if you’re planning treatment in advance.

Look into medical loans

Borrowing money to pay for treatment isn’t ideal. However, there are medical loan options out there that come with 0% interest, providing that you don’t miss a payment and can pay them back in a certain period of time. These are useful for emergency treatment when in you’re in need of money fast but don’t want to rely on a standard loan.

Seek legal compensation

If you were injured or made sick as a result of an accident that wasn’t your fault, there could always be the option to seek legal compensation. Workplace injuries are a common example of a case when you may be legally entitled to compensation – there may be legal services such as Rosenfeld Construction Injury Lawyers that specialise in injuries within your trade that you can rely on for support. Road accident injuries and injuries caused by medical malpractice are other instances in which you may be legally entitled to compensation.

Look into Medicare/Medicaid

There are federal and state support systems in place that are worth looking into. Medicare is one example – if you are over 65 or have a disability, you may be able to sign up to Medicare, which can entitle you to free healthcare. Medicaid is meanwhile another option for those on a low income – if you meet the requirements, this may too entitle you to free healthcare in some states at some clinics. You often need to apply to these schemes several months in advance, making it unsuitable for emergency healthcare. It’s an affordable alternative to insurance for many people.

Don’t dismiss health insurance

Health insurance rates can be expensive – particularly if you have underlying health conditions. However, you shouldn’t dismiss the option altogether. There are many insurers out there that offer cheap plans, although you may have to meet certain requirements to apply. Sites like Value Penguin offer more information on how to find cheap insurance.

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