Life is full of surprises, and because of that, it can sometimes be difficult to plan. That’s why it’s important to have something to fall back on when life throws you a curveball out of nowhere.
The COVID-19 pandemic sparked in a very short period of time, and it has certainly proved challenging for many. Rare are the people that haven’t been affected by it in one way or another, or that haven’t been forced to change their routine. Because this situation is so all-encompassing and important, healthshare ministries have been forced to adapt to the new situation. This article provides an in-depth review of how certain healthshare ministries have decided to handle the COVID-19 situation.
1. ZION HEALTH
Zion Health has dedicated a whole slot in its top menu to COVID-19!
In their Financial Commentary, Zion Health reassures its members that the company is financially doing great, and bound to continue providing great discounts to its members. The company boasts that only 10% of the monthly medical cost-sharing contributions are retained for administration costs, and 90% of the contributions are made available for cost-sharing. In the last part dedicated to COVID-19, Zion Health has affirmed that they are confident that the community will be able to share the current and on-going medical costs.
On the page called Financial Relief, Zion Health has revealed that they have established a special COVID-19 Sharing Relief Program for its members. New members get 50% off new Membership enrollments for the first 3 months by using the code ‘’COVID19’’, and current members who have been financially affected by COVID19 can request 50% off for one month by contacting Zion Health. If you think you have COVID-19, you need to bear in mind that if you aren’t hospitalized within 48 hours of membership enrolment, Zion Health will not consider it a pre-existing condition.
You can enroll using a Direct Primary Care practice or directly with Zion health, so there’s no need for you to leave your home! Direct Primary Care practices can connect with patients using technology, and Zion Health Direct Members can connect with a Teladoc physician by phone 24/7. This way, the risk of Coronavirus is minimized.
Finally, if you want to find out more about Coronavirus, you can read the message of Jeff Lee, the MD of Zion Health here.
2. ALTRUA HEALTHSHARE
Altrua healthshare doesn’t seem to have any response readily available regarding the COVID-19 situation on how they’re handling it. However, they have provided some information regarding COVID-19, some tips on what you can do to prevent it, and a list of the most common symptoms. You can read them here.
Medi-Share has also provided a visible blue banner which immediately leads you to the dedicated COVID-19 section of the site. It has an impressive amount of information, which will be covered below. Of course, if you want to know more, you can visit the site (link above).
The most important piece of information is that yes, testing and treatment for Coronavirus (COVID-19) are eligible for sharing with Medi-Share. However, just like testing and treatment of other illnesses, this is also based on the Medi-Share Guidelines. Members are advised to first utilize free telehealth and to utilize PHCS providers only if further treatment is recommended.
This ministry offers MDLive, a contracted telehealth provider, at no cost. This service provides 24/7 access to a certified physician, so if you think you might have Coronavirus, this should be your first step. Remember to not leave your home unless you absolutely have to – you’re not only putting yourself at risk, but also others.
If advanced care for COVID-19 is recommended, rest assured that all COVID-19 related medical bills will be eligible for sharing once your Annual Household Portion has been met. Also, if the MDLive physician refers you to seek care for Coronavirus, the urgent care provider fee or the emergency room provider fee will be waived.
Medi-Share has transitioned 95% of their employers to remote work. Their working hours are 8 am – 9 pm EST Monday – Friday.
Finally, Medi-Share had provided several useful links, such as government resources and loan programs. They also encourage you to subscribe to their email and check their blog regularly for updates and content regarding COVID-19. Plus, they have included a Prayer Guide as an additional source of comfort for its members.
4. SAMARITAN MINISTRIES
A large, orange ‘Learn more’ button at the top of the Samaritan Ministries website should take you to their Coronavirus claims.
The first piece of advice Samaritan Ministries offer you is to place your trust in Christ, and choose perseverance and faith over fear and anxiety. Next, the members are informed that the Ministry is well-prepared for a partial or a full quarantine situation and that it has an emergency plan if such a need arises. They are also taking measures to minimize the risks of spreading COVID-19 and keep their staff healthy.
Samaritan Ministries reassure their members that they will share tests and treatments for COVID-19 like they do for any other symptom-related illness. Tests, labs, emergency room, hospital, antibiotics and so on can all be submitted for sharing. However, preventative testing is not shareable as a regular need. However, it can be submitted according to the Special Prayer Need Guidelines.
Next, Samaritan ministries provide some links and useful info from the CDC and advise their members to stay home and contact their healthcare provider if they suspect that they might have COVID-19. Only if severe symptoms occur should the members contact their healthcare provider or emergency room and seek care immediately. They also direct their members to frequent local and state government websites for more information.
In the following segment, Samaritan Ministries advise their members to pray, seek medical care if they need it, utilize email to contact Samaritan, utilize the member Dashboard, make sure their email address is accurate and up to date, and be patient.
Finally, in the Q&A, Samaritan ministries provide some useful advice for their members. Members that cannot afford their Share are advised to join the Samaritan Sponsorship program, and members that are feeling generous are encouraged to donate to the Disaster Relief – Power to Act Fund.
5. SOLIDARITY HEALTHSHARE
Solidarity HealthShare has provided their Coronavirus statements in their blog entries.
This Ministry has also decided to transition its staff to work at home to curb the spreading of Coronavirus. They vouch to continue taking calls, processing medical bills and attending to the members’ medical advocacy needs regardless.
The way this ministry is handling the situation is by prioritizing the most urgent needs. Because of this, they advised their members not to call but send an email instead if their needs aren’t urgent. The ministry has provided the following email addresses and a phone number:
- For specific balanced bill questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
- For bills, bill status, or general questions: email@example.com
- For urgent or emergent requests: call 1-844-313-4999
It is important to note that any medically necessary care related to infectious disease (including COVID-19) is eligible for sharing!
Just like Medi-Share, Solidarity HealthShare also offers a telemedicine program called DialCare. This service provides clinical advice over the phone and offers screening services for COVID-19. To register and book an appointment, you need to visit www.solidaritycarecard.com or call 1-833-795-7781.
6. LIBERTY HEALTHSHARE
By visiting Liberty HealthShare’s website, you can easily access their COVID-19 part of the site – simply click on the red banner and you’re good to go.
Liberty HealthShare claims that they are well prepared to both ensure business continuity and protect the well-being of their members and employers. For Christians struggling to deal with the current situation in the world, Liberty HealthShare has provided an action plan for people of faith, written by Pastor Wes Humble. You can read about the plan here.
Next, Liberty reassures its members that their offices remain in operation, however with some changes to the usual schedule, which is to be expected in these circumstances. The offices are closed on Fridays to help protect the health and safety of their employees. In exchange, the offices work longer from Monday to Thursday – from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. EST. As a precautionary measure, some of their staff are working remotely for the time being. However, the Ministry will continue to facilitate the sharing of eligible medical expenses nonetheless. The Ministry has also asked their members not to call or email them unless their needs are immediate. Instead, the members are advised to use the following channels (taken from their website):
- Prenote – If your provider prescribes a non-urgent treatment, testing, procedure or surgery, please send us a Prenotification request form that can be found in your ShareBox. Urgent pre-notifications should be called into our pre-note department at 855-585-4237.
- ShareBox – The latest information regarding any sharing questions can be found via your personal ShareBox.
- Member Shares – All monthly shares should be sent via ShareBox. At this time, please do not come to our offices to submit your
monthly share; instead, mail your monthly share to the following address:
Gospel Light DBA Liberty HealthShare
PO Box 771972
Detroit, Michigan 48277-1972
As a relief to many, the COVID-19 testing and treatment (when available) are shareable via the Liberty HealthShare membership. Eligible medical expenses that are related to the testing and treatment of COVID-19 can be shared according to the guidelines and the program level a member has. This includes testing, labs, emergency room, hospital, etc.
Finally, Liberty Healthshare provided some general tips, factual information, and resources related to COVID-19. You can find them on this site.
7. CHRISTIAN HEALTHSHARE MINISTRIES
CHM has informed its members that testing and treatment for COVID-19 is
shared, just like the testing and treatment of other confirmed illnesses. Bear
in mind that Personal Responsibility amounts depend on the member’s
participation level. Participation levels are the programs that you can sign up
for – Bronze, Silver, and Gold, each with the Brother’s Keeper upgrade
The Personal Responsibility amounts can be reduced based on discounts that are arranged with providers.
It is worth noting that on March 20th, CHM decided to undergo two weeks of off-site operations, in order to respect the social distancing recommendations and protect its workers. The company continued to share medical bills, but to change how they would be handled and minimize human contact.
As soon as you enter the CHM website, you should see a banner that will
take you to the COVID-19
segment of the site. If you wish to check for updates, watch helpful
videos, and read some advice about how to prevent COVID or behave if you get
it, then you should definitely check it out.
8. ONESHARE HEALTH
To access important information regarding COVID-19, just click on a red banner at the top of OneShare Health’s website.
OneShare first provides some advice on how to behave during the pandemic and what to do to minimize the chances of getting Coronavirus. Members that are feeling unwell are encouraged to call the Telemedicine number, which is provided on the members’ ID card in the membership guide. All members have access to Telemedicine, it is free and available 24/7. These are the numbers provided (taken from the website):
OneShare has also sent their members an e-mail regarding Coronavirus. In this email, they have expressed how they care about their employers’ and members’ health, and how there will be no interruption with the membership program. OneShare stated that they will treat Coronavirus as an acute illness and how the appropriate program visit fee will apply. They provided more information regarding Telemedicine (which we’ve already covered), and also informed their members that they have an open Prayer Line, which is open to everyone by calling 877-293-7481.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a great example of how important it is to make the right choices regarding one’s health. We hope that this review of various companies’ reactions to COVID-19 will either confirm your belief in a ministry or make you consider another one. Don’t forget to stay informed and check the sites’ updates as the situation progresses. Remember to stay safe, and to keep others safe by not leaving your house unnecessarily and by washing your hands often. These might be dire times, but with just a pinch of solidarity and responsibility, we can help end this situation as painlessly as possible, and enter a new, brighter tomorrow.