Quantcast
Connect with us

Tennessee Christians are replacing health insurance with ‘sharing ministries’ that require people to live Godly lives: report

Published

on

christian evangelicals raising hands in praise prayer
(Photo: Shutterstock)

On Tuesday, Brett Kelman of The Tennessean wrote about a spike in the uninsured rate in Tennessee — driven in part by 31,000 Christians in the state foregoing health insurance in favor of church-backed “sharing ministries.”

These ministries are pitched as alternatives to medical coverage, but they are not health insurance at all — rather, they are better described as religious crowdfunding ventures where fellow congregants may cover your medical bills. But the key word is may. According to Kelman, “these groups don’t actually guarantee any payment, and if you break their rules by smoking pot or having unmarried sex, you are on your own.”

ADVERTISEMENT

They are also not bound by any of the Affordable Care Act regulations, meaning they can deny any essential benefits they want and deny coverage for pre-existing conditions. But with the added twist that for those who are refused coverage, they are urged to use faith and prayer as a substitute for medicine.

Such restrictions were demonstrated vividly two months ago, according to The New York Times, when one such group, Samaritan Ministries, allegedly refused to pay the entirety of medical expenses for a child named Blake Collie, whose family owed hundreds of thousands of dollars after he was hospitalized for a brain aneurysm. Samaritan Ministries, despite charging hundreds in “monthly share” fees, does not cover the cost of hospitalizations over $250,000 — and instructs patients who are denied to “just trust God.”

Samaritan Ministries broadly disputes the Times‘ characterization, claiming that they have an alternative program that helps people save to cover the cost of medical expenses over $250,000, and that Collie’s father has publicly stated he is satisfied with the organization.

Nevertheless, these “sharing ministries” join a number of groups that offer to pay certain medical expenses but are not qualified health plans — a problem that has snowballed as the Trump administration has enacted rules making it easier to sell “association” or “short-term” health plans that are exempt from most ACA rules.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

WATCH: Trump walked out of a 1990 interview with CNN when they asked about his finances

Published

on

Long before he became the president, Donald Trump was a business tycoon who had trouble holding onto his money.

As New York Times reporting on the president's personal income tax records has shown, Trump throughout his career would frequently burn through money at a stunning rate throughout the 1990s, at one point reporting adjusted gross losses of nearly $1 billion per year in 1994 and 1995.

The tax records obtained by the Times show that things really started going downhill for Trump in 1990, when he reported a gross net loss of $400 million.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

GOP lawmaker in Tennessee admits to prescribing opioids to his second cousin — who was also his lover

Published

on

Tennessee state Sen. Joey Hensley (R) is under investigation by a medical review board for providing opioids to family members, one of which was his second cousin -- who also happened to be his lover, the Tennessean reports.

Hensley, an anti-LGBT ideologue who wrote his state's infamous "Don't Say Gay" bill, admits that he prescribed drugs for his relatives, but says he's the only doctor in town.

“There are not many people in the county who haven’t been to see Dr. Hensley, and she was one of them,” defense attorney David Steed said, adding, “Half of the county are Hensleys. Everyone there knows everyone. There were multiple relationships and the physician-patient relationship was only one and somewhat incidental to the others.”

Continue Reading
 

2020 Election

West Virginia voter: ‘I’ll probably vote for Donald Trump’ because ‘he keeps the people to the TV set’

Published

on

A group of West Virginia voters explained their voting choices to MSNBC on Monday.

"I don't have TV, I don't have internet," one woman said. "I'm pretty far behind. And I bet you a lot of around here are because we're poor. I don't know nothing about Joe [Biden]. I ain't never heard nothing about him at all. Donald Trump, I know a little bit about him because of the past couple of years."

"I'll probably vote for Donald Trump," Jeff Kibbey told MSNBC. "He keeps the people to the TV set."

"One, Trump is good," Francis Senter insisted. "Biden -- however you pronounce his name -- is good too. But like I say, I can't judge either one of them. It's the same community it ain't never going to change because if it was going to change it wouldn't look like this right here."

Continue Reading
 
 
Democracy is in peril. Invest in progressive news. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free. LEARN MORE