Broke-Ass Financial Coaching: What’s up with Healthcare?

While being young, broke and beautiful is all well and good, some people’s finances are more jacked than others.  That’s why we’ve invited Betsy Crouch (aka Coach $izzle) to come onboard and dole out some much needed advice.  She is a professional financial coach after all.  If you’ve got a question you’d like answered please email her atcoachsizzle@brokeassstuart.com.  Maybe your question will be the next one answered.

What the f#%! is going on with Healthcare?

What is going on with healthcare is bananas.

If you do not have health insurance you expose yourself to great liability.  Thanks Captain Obvious.  You may say “well I can’t afford the premiums, and even if I could, I don’t trust that health insurance companies will cover what they say they will.”  I can understand that. I have to say that I have always been covered by insurance, but not always great insurance.  Unfortunately, more than 60% of bankruptcies are caused by medical expenses.

What is my story?  I blew my knee out playing soccer and my health insurance sucked.  Bills: $10,000.  I switched insurance policies and then I had food poisoning, passed out and hit my head in my bathroom.  I was taken to hospital “out of my network” in an ambulance: Bill: $6,000.

I have a few more doozies.  So long story short, I have learned what not to do with choosing health insurance policies, and I learned not to pick a hospital like I pick a restaurant, “oh, I’ve never been there before!”

Is it better to have bad insurance than no insurance?  Most would say “yes.”

Many don’t get health insurance because they feel they can’t afford it.  When I have a client who doesn’t have health insurance, they usually have not gotten a health insurance quote in a long while.  Certainly there are people who genuinely cannot pay for insurance.  However, there are many people who could afford an option for health insurance that covers “catastrophic” healthcare situations.  It is important to ask what the greatest “out of pocket” expense you could incur with the policy you are looking at.

For tips on choosing a catastrophic health insurance policy, check out this article from ehow.

Back to healthcare bein’ bananas, This American Life just did a two part series on healthcare.  The first part is a fantastic explanation of the American Healthcare system. The second part, includes explanations of drug costs, and I know you’re excited.. pet insurance.  There is a story about a woman from Wisconsin with a hedgehog pet who has a tumor.  It is truly informative and entertaining.

For more fun and learning entertainment, read this about 10 healthcare systems around the world.  Spoonful of sugar people.  If only these people could have substituted their podcasts for all of my classes in school, I definitely would have learned a lot more.

Depressing start.  I know you didn’t really want to talk about health insurance.  I care about you.  If you can, get some crazy catastrophic health insurance and pray that you’ll be covered.   You could go to the Casino, but believe it or not the odds are better with insurance.

What is your experience?  Please share ideas, tips, suggestions.

Email coachsizzle@brokeassstuart.com

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About the author

Betsy Crouch - Coach $izzle

Betsy hates to brag, but she grew up in Michigan. An unhappy materialist/rabid consumer turned minimalist, Betsy feels right at home in the warm socially responsible arms of San Francisco. With an Economics degree, a basic financial certification, and a range of personal experience, she has developed a unique financial coaching philosophy. She wants you to feel a sense of serenity with your finances and she shares what she has learned from coaching almost 200 people one on one. Betsy wants you to embrace your "sizzle," and for you to become a more confident and empowered Broke Ass.
  • Shalama

    As a student and one with very little income, it would be very difficult to pay for insurance at this moment. If I got a plan that I could afford monthly, the deductible and copay is so high that I would never use the insurance anyways unless it was a catastrophe. Any suggestions as to free and inexpensive ways to get my basic healthcare in SF without having a insurance plan? Free clinics, co-op clinic, bartering, etc? Heard of anything along those lines?