Do You Really Need Health Insurance?

If you generally enjoy good health and are not sick often, you may be wondering if you really need to have health insurance. As everyone knows, the coverage is not cheap especially if you have to buy your own, and even if your employer offers health insurance, a substantial amount is probably coming out of your paycheck to subsidize that.

Health insurance can provide peace of mind, even if you so find that you never really need to use it. Just like flood insurance, car insurance and travel insurance it is reassuring to know it is there if you need it, although you hope you will never have to use it. One way to justify the cost is to tell yourself that the cost of the premiums even over several years is still a lot less than the cost of major surgery or a lengthy hospital stay. With the cost of prescriptions, doctor visits and basic procedures rising, most people are glad of their insurance when they do need to use it.

Probably the biggest reason that anyone takes out health insurance is for the financial peace of mind that it can provide. A complicated medical procedure, a stay in a hospital or a serious injury can potentially cost thousands of dollars; most of us simply don’t have that kind of money available if we actually had to come up with it. In fact, it is estimated that large medical bills are the cause of almost half the personal bankruptcies in the US; many people simply cannot pay their high medical expenses.

Another advantage of having insurance is that you can always be assured of having access to treatment when you most need it. Unfortunately, many hospitals will not place patients on an organ transplant list unless they have some type of health insurance, including Medicare and Medicaid. Having insurance ensures that you will not only be treated in a timely manner, but can take advantage of the latest advances in medical technology. Whether it is fair or not, customer service is typically better with private health insurers, than with public health providers.

Studies also indicate that most people who do not have medical insurance are understandably reluctant to visit the doctor, even for something routine or inexpensive. Often, this means that a condition that could easily have been treated early on becomes more serious, and of course is more costly to treat. The bottom line is that health insurance is undoubtedly expensive, but definitely worth the cost.