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long term health insurance

The BS Show: Why The Future Doesn’t Look Bright for Long Term Health Insurance

Solidarity President and Co-Founder Chris Faddis recently appeared on The BS Show with Bob Sansevere to discuss what the changing tide of long term health insurance might look like for Americans as costs continue to rise despite a lack of increased in coverage.

Bob Sansevere (00:00):

We are joined by Christopher Faddis, co-founder and president of the nonprofit Healthcare Sharing Ministry Solidarity Health Share, which is an ethical, affordable alternative to traditional health insurance and is faithful to the moral teachings of the Catholic Church. Chris, I came across a story that well just breaking this week after Memorial Day, about eight hospitals in Massachusetts and they’re run by the now bankrupt Steward Healthcare. And there’s an impending summer sale at auction of eight Massachusetts hospitals operated by the Dallas-based Steward Healthcare. And what I’m wondering, I mean they had been run by a nonprofit, Caritas Christi Healthcare, I think it was affiliated with a Catholic system and these Steward Healthcare, I don’t know if it’s a hedge fund, but I do know that hedge funds have destroyed the newspaper business because they have bought groups of papers and just slashed and slashed. And the Pioneer Press where I once worked was part of that. They have ’em down to bare bones where they don’t even have an office anymore, where a newsroom people work from home, they take all the money they can out and then they pretty much suck ’em dry. And is that happening in healthcare because that is just one more thing that is wrong with healthcare. So we talked about the number of doctors and nurses that are going to be needed over the next decade, but this would lend to it too. Is this happening across the country or is this isolated?

Chris Faddis (01:31):

Yeah, I don’t know that it’s happening across the country. It’s definitely happening, but not in a massive way. I think this situation, it sounds like was one where, again, one of the issues that we see is a lot of these private equities are coming in and buying up nonprofit systems or figuring out how to take over control of all the assets and run it as a nonprofit, but with the for-profit backend, and especially when they come in without any sort of healthcare credentials, without any experience running hospitals. I mean, in this scenario, this was a nonprofit system that was actually running successfully. They had one really bad year, they brought in kind a turnaround, CEO, he kind of fixed things up and got things moving very smoothly. In fact, they improved their bond rating, all these things. And then this private equity group came in and bought them and unfortunately then dismantled the whole thing, kind of turned, rebuilt.


The whole operation, didn’t know what they were doing. Probably looked at it with the eyes of business, not the eyes of healthcare. Yeah, it’s very unfortunate, but part of my concern is you’re seeing more and more of these private equity firms owning systems. And it’s not to say that there’s not a way that a private equity group could own and operate a healthcare system ethically well, but unfortunately, when push comes to shove, private equity groups are beholden to their investors. And so the decisions they make are sort of perverse incentives because they’re incentivized to serve the investor and not the patient. And in this scenario, it sounds like there was a lot of willing and dealing to get some money out and those kinds of things, and then they weren’t able to recover. So it’s really unfortunate to see this happen.

Bob Sansevere (03:20):

It is. Last week we chatted about the US could be facing a shortage of between 37,800 and 124,000 physicians within the next 10 years. And also a number of nurses, a shortage there. You have projections, I’m sure at Solidarity HealthShare, and I know that you keep growing your membership. Do you see in the next 10 years, will there be more, many, many, many more people going to HealthShare groups like Solidarity than now just because they’re going to look around and say, I need a better alternative?

Chris Faddis (03:58):

Yeah, I think so. I mean, I think more and more people are realizing that this system isn’t getting better. None of the fixes are working, and it’s only getting more expensive and all of the likes. So I think healthcare sharing’s for sure here to stay. And we’ve seen such a growth in health sharing over the last 10, 12 years, and it will continue. It’s actually, the growth has slowed because the subsidies that the federal government’s giving for Affordable Care Act exchange plans has just continued to increase. And so the price differential for some folks is not quite as beneficial. So it’s slowed, but I think the reality is not just health sharing. Health sharing for sure will continue to grow, but any sort of self-pay, cash pay system or model right now where people are able to be in control of their care and doctors are being able to better control who and when they serve and how they serve, I think you’re going to see all of those kinds of models continue to improve and grow.


Are you noticing, are you getting a lot of people who are just talking about, for instance, the President Biden, his Health and Human services, it’s excluding religious Americans from the healthcare system in the fact that they, I mean, things are made, decisions are being made that may be difficult for people who are not even deeply religious, but religious that they’re having issues with funding elective abortions and transgender surgeries. Is that leading to an influx of people coming to health sharing or has that not had a great impact yet? It is.


No, it is. And certainly the interest, in fact, when that rule was published a few weeks ago when they finalized the rule, as I had an op-ed in Fox News that week and lots of news coverage about the story and actually our calls and leads drastically increased that week just from the attention around that rule. And I think that’s a huge sign that people are saying, wait a minute. I’m not participating this crap anymore. So I think a lot people are making that switch, and I think they’ll continue. We have to keep telling people what’s possible. I think people are afraid they don’t want to let go of their healthcare, but if they know there’s an option, then I think people are certainly more than willing to take a stand and do something different.

Bob Sansevere (06:13):

Do you think that this election coming up, that this whole healthcare situation could have a bigger impact on how people vote than maybe ever before? I mean, well last time though, there was the whole abortion issue that I think impacted.

Chris Faddis (06:27):

Yeah, it’s really hard because I don’t think we’re focused on healthcare at all right now in the discussion. And so I would think it should have a huge impact. I mean, if I’m looking down at the tea leaves, I’m saying, when I’m thinking about our country, I’m thinking about economy, I’m thinking about security, I’m thinking about energy, all these kinds of things. And healthcare’s got to be up there in that top five list for most people because if you think about your own family and your own future, what’s one of the number one things you need to make sure is cared for? So I think it should be more of an issue. Neither candidate seems to be talking about it and neither side seems to want to talk about it. I think that maybe tells you something and maybe neither side has a solution, I don’t know. But I think it should certainly be part of the conversation and I’d like to see more people raising it and saying, Hey, what are you going to do about these things?

Bob Sansevere (07:18):

Well, overwhelmingly I saw some poll results and they talked about many people, the economy in one way or another is what is on their mind. They don’t care about what’s happening in Gaza. They care about what’s happening themselves. And I think that healthcare has got to be a big part of that, particularly when you need it, when you don’t need it. If you have a job and you have a traditional healthcare, you’re paying in, but it’s when you need it and you have to start, you have these deductibles and you have to come up with the money to cover it. That’s when it impacts you. And that’s when the economy starts getting impacted. I mean, unfortunately, more and more people go to any hospital. You don’t usually see tumbleweed in the emergency room. It’s active. There’s a lot going on in there. So I think it can certainly have an impact. And-

Chris Faddis (08:07):

I think more and more people are realizing that the gig is up, as they say. I think more and more people are seeing that whatever they were promised didn’t really come to light. And so I think it’s taken a while for people to get there, but I think it’s definitely something we need to talk about. But I was talking to a former presidential candidate on Friday night. I was at a dinner and saw Senator Rick Santorum, and I asked him, because he’d been involved in trying to reform Obamacare and things, and he said, I said, is it true that there’s no appetite on the hill or in a leadership? He said, no, there’s no one wanting to take this on right now in current office. And certainly not even President Trump doesn’t seem to want to take on healthcare. So something we need to probably be more vocal about to get them to realize. It’s important to us.

Bob Sansevere (08:56):

Well, wasn’t senator from You’re in Arizona, was John McCain one of the votes when Trump had both houses that he didn’t want to budge? Or was that just he objected to anything Trump wanted to do? Or was it healthcare?

Chris Faddis (09:11):

Yeah, I’m trying to remember. Yeah, I don’t know if it had to do with Trump. I think it was something to do with the changes in the healthcare bill. And I think a big part of it for a lot of these guys was they got lambasted on the preexisting condition issue. And I think they’re afraid to say, Hey, we’ll do something. But preexisting conditions still has to be a part of it. And if they don’t do something about preexisting conditions and the left will excoriate them for not caring about the sick, right? And so they’re sort of in a rock and hard place. But at the end of the day, I think all of us can agree that if somebody has cancer and they no longer can work and they get dropped from their employer insurance, that they should have something, but that’s a welfare problem. That’s not an insurance program.

Bob Sansevere (09:50):


Chris Faddis (09:50):

Tell you

Bob Sansevere (09:51):


Chris Faddis (09:53):

A country, that’s why, same kind of thing with Medicare or Medicaid. We take care of people who can ultimately not take care of themselves. Let’s just make that part of the conversation in sort of a welfare context

Bob Sansevere (10:05):

And you know what-

Chris Faddis (10:05):

-deal with it.

Bob Sansevere (10:07):

 And Chris, let’s make that, let’s take care of that before we start paying off student loans for kids who went to Harvard. Thank God. Alright, I don’t want to get on that tangent, but I do want to say that solidarity share solidarity Check it out. Great alternative to traditional healthcare. Chris fas one of the co-founders and now president of Solidarity Health Share. Thank you, Chris. Take a quick break. The BS shall be right back.