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      Money Talks: Health Care Without Insurance

      Abigail Schwab, edishare client, says, "We both have college educations, we are very good with our money, we try to be responsible but these are the options that we have... so it's nice to know they're another option."

      The Schwabs are a young family that's getting by without health insurance - but not without help with health care costs. Because they're using an insurance alternative called Medishare.

      Schwab says, "It's a group of people that come together and we share each other's medical needs. So, instead of me paying Blue Cross, Blue Shield or Aetna, we're paying Mr. Smith's medical bills for the month."

      So in essence, Medishare cuts out the insurance middle man - it's just a group of like-minded people who promise to help one another with healthcare costs.

      But the key words there were "like-minded." Medi-Share is a program of the Christian Care Ministry: members can't smoke, and same - sex couples need not apply. Also, the program won't pay for anything related to abortion, alcohol or other life-style related illnesses.

      "I need to know that I'm not going to be paying for someone else who's decided to sit on the couch and eat bon bons all day, everyday", says Schwab.

      The cost for Abigail and her husband is $250/month - they pay the first $2,500 - essentially the deductible.

      The Christian Care Ministry says the Schwabs are two of about 100,000 Americans now participating in healthcare sharing organizations like theirs. But with the cost of care creeping up, that's a number that may expand.

      This is one type of plan that addresses the cost of healthcare - but there are others. For more information and ideas, check me out online at