Blog Designed by Pediredla Kamal Kumar Andhra Entertainer: Why Health Insurance Is Important To For Employees And Business Owners

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Why Health Insurance Is Important To For Employees And Business Owners

Being Uninsured Has a Negative Impact on Health
According to the Urban Institute report “Why Health Insurance is Important,” by Bovbjerg and Hadley (2007), the three most prominent reasons why being insured is essential to health care are:
1. Uninsured people get less medical care and less timely care.
Insurance provides access to medical professionals for timely diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic illnesses and makes on-going treatments and preventive monitoring possible. The severity of an illness is largely determined by whether or not it is treated early or late in the disease process. Regarding preventive health maintenance and insurance, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has found that uninsured people are less likely to be recommended to have screening tests such as mammograms, pap smears and colorectal exams (IOM, 2002). Without early or timely diagnosis and treatment, chronic and potentially fatal diseases such as cancer, hypertension and diabetes get worse over time, resulting in even more severe and complex medical conditions and complications that are more difficult and expensive to treat.
Absence of treatment and delayed treatment are dangerous because they allow diseases to progress and cause end organ damage, resulting in problems such as heart attacks, stroke, kidney failure and blindness, which cause significant morbidity, disability, and reduced productivity.
2. Health outcomes are worse for the uninsured.
It is well documented that the uninsured have poorer health and shorter life-spans than people with health insurance. The Henry J. Kaiser Foundation report that in 2006, nearly 47 million Americans under the age of 65 were uninsured. According to the IOM, lack of health insurance is directly responsible for the deaths of 18,000 American adults, annually (Bovbjerg and Hadley, 2007).
Population based studies performed for a period lasting 5 to 7 years reveal that uninsured adults between the ages of 55 and 65 have a 25% greater chance of dying than adults of the same age who are privately insured (IOM, 2002). Uninsured heart attack victims are more likely to die in the hospital or shortly after release than those who have private insurance. With respect to accidents, one statewide study showed that uninsured crash victims had a death rate that was 37 percent higher than for those who were privately insured (IOM, 2002).
3. Lack of insurance is a fiscal burden for uninsured people and their families.
Medical bills are a factor in 16 percent of bankruptcies, and uninsured families are 2 to 3 times more likely to report having problems with medical bills. A high population of uninsured individuals can be burdensome to health care providers because of the demand of free or reduced fee care (Bovbjerg and Hadley, 2007). Illnesses and absence of well being negatively impact job performance via reduced productivity and absenteeism. Because illness reduces the ability to work, it also reduces the amount of money than can be earned. Absenteeism is also costly for businesses.
Who Benefits Most From Having Health Insurance?
The IOM has found that adults in late middle age and those with chronic diseases are most likely to benefit from health insurance coverage because they are less healthy than younger adults. Racial and ethnic minorities also would benefit from health insurance coverage because of lower general health status (IOM, 2002).
What is Adequate Health Insurance?
According to the IOM, heath care should be such that it ensures “adequate provider participation...that includes preventive and screening services, outpatient prescription drugs and specialty mental health care” (IOM, 2002).
What All This Means for You
This information shared in this article makes it plain that having insurance should be a priority in life for employees as well as the self employed. Once the “why” of health insurance is accepted, the challenge becomes “how - to” obtain health insurance, if you are unemployed. CNN Money gives the following basic pointers (CNN Money, n.d.):
  1. If your employer offers insurance, accept it!
  2. If you are self employed, price out the insurance options available for your budget. (Online resources and your local Chamber of Commerce are good resources to help you make a list of your insurance options.)
  3. Always compare plans. Keep in mind that the cheapest plan is the one with the best price for the services you are likely to use.
  4. Look for out of pocket expenses, coverage for doctor visits and hospitalization.
  5. Evaluate your options for mental health, prescription drugs, dental and vision coverage.
  6. Take time to get information online about health care networks you are considering.
  7. Talk to your accountant about tax breaks that are available for your personal and business taxes.
Conclusion
Uninsured people have poorer health and die sooner than those who are insured. Because being uninsured negatively impacts health, longevity and earnings, it is more costly to not have insurance than it is to have it. With respect to personal finances, as well as business, family and estate planning, having adequate health insurance is a major priority


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