Solidarity Blog

Washington Examiner: America Needs a More Affordable, Ethical Healthcare Option

affordable healthcare options

Opinion by Chris Faddis published 8/8/23

Read the original article published in the Washington Examiner here.

The Challenge of Affordable Healthcare Options

Quality, affordable healthcare options should never be considered a luxury item for working families or retirees. Unfortunately, rapidly rising costs coupled with politically driven, woke policies are effectively making basic healthcare less accessible – or outright unethical – for ordinary Americans who need it.   

A recent PwC report warned that healthcare costs are expected to rise a whopping 7% in 2024 alone. This is absolutely crushing for the millions of Americans already suffering under the current healthcare system, where rising prices are forcing them to delay or forgo care altogether.  As rates continue to increase, Americans can expect to pay even higher premiums or out- of- pocket expenses they can’t afford. Low-income Americans will suffer from this shift the most. 

Hidden Costs and Overcharging

It would be one thing if these expensive rates were for elective services. Yet hospitals and healthcare systems frequently overcharge for the most basic care while hiding their pricing information to avoid accountability. They’re good at getting away with it too. In the absence of any semblance of transparency or accountability, top hospitals charge an average of  seven times the actual cost of care for their services.    

These wildly out of control costs are in many ways endemic to the rotting industry itself – an industry that once championed life and the Hippocratic Oath to “‘do no harm.” Today, that same industry engages in morally depraved procedures such as radical transgender interventions and abortions, and actively discriminates against people of faith who disagree with them. Not only that – conscientious Americans are often forced to fund such objectionable procedures through their healthcare plans.  

Healthshares as Affordable Healthcare Options

That’s one reason why healthcare sharing ministries are gaining prominence among Americans who are sick of paying crippling prices to an industry that overwhelmingly hates their values. They offer Americans a viable alternative by respecting the values of members while fighting to keep healthcare costs as low as possible.     

Unlike traditional insurers, healthcare sharing ministries are typically faith- based and committed to protecting life from conception to natural death.  At my own healthcare sharing ministry, Solidarity HealthShare, we are proudly exempt from federal requirements that compel funding for immoral procedures, drugs, and devices via the Affordable Care Act. We are committed to protecting the conscience rights of our members who refuse to be a part of woke politicians’ shameless attempts to take over healthcare.     

Healthcare sharing ministries are also an increasingly tempting option because they advocate on behalf of members for the highest quality option at the lowest possible cost. For example, through our model of repricing, Solidarity uses the Medicare Allowable Amount as the baseline for what a given procedure should cost. We then set a fair and just price and negotiate with providers directly to achieve the greatest possible medical savings for our community. This pricing model has consistently saved Solidarity Members 60-70% on billed charges. So while the healthcare industry hides pricing breakdowns from patients and drastically overcharges for simple services, healthcare sharing ministries work to see that the individuals and families in their care can access basic healthcare without breaking the bank.     

What We Can Do

Thankfully, many Americans are waking up to the reality that our healthcare industry is broken and routinely takes advantage of them at a time when skyrocketing prices already make basic necessities unaffordable. People of faith and low-income Americans especially are feeling trapped in a system that they can’t financially or morally afford.     

I hope and pray that eventually all Americans wake up to this reality and say no to a system that is bankrupting them and spurning their most cherished values. Through higher quality, ethical care, our nation will be full of the happier, healthier individuals and families upon which our nation’s future depends.    

Chris Faddis is the president of Solidarity HealthShare, a healthcare sharing ministry guided by the moral teachings of the Catholic Church that negotiates directly with providers to ensure delivery of high-quality and affordable, life-affirming healthcare for the more than 40,000 Members it has served since 2016.