It’s no secret that the current economy is in shambles. It is a multi-faceted problem, affecting even the most unlikely aspects of the nation. Unfortunately, much like the economy, the health of some is similarly in decline.
The economy is nearly flat-lining, and as a result, companies across America are downsizing. Such victims of the economy lose a job, a steady income, and to boot, health insurance. This modern-day depression also forces many to “trim the fat” and eliminate surplus expenses. Unfortunately, one cost they often eliminate is health insurance. Further still are those in a low-income situation, who may struggle with just day-to-day expenses. For those individuals, healthcare can be next to nonexistent.
But an illness strikes as it pleases, ignoring tight budgets and financial fears. As a result, according to post-trib.com, “someone dies every 24 minutes in America [because] he or she was uninsured and could not get [health]care.”
The statistics are staggering, but people do have options. Free health clinics across the country are available to the general public, and they can be surprisingly helpful. Such establishments often require documentation of your financial obligations, however, thus it is best to call the clinic prior to visiting. If you do not qualify for clinical services, a representative of the clinic should be able to suggest other clinics to you. If you do receive clinical services, you and your provider can agree upon costs based on income and family size. Some clinics even claim to see every single patient who seeks help, regardless of one’s financial situation.
Some may prefer the hospital over a local clinic. Hospitals must admit every patient, but they can cost quite a bit more. These medical establishments likely boast advanced medical equipment and are more apt to handle complex cases. Should you require hospitalized care, your physician and hospital will not expect you to pay the entire bill up front. First, some physicians or medical affiliates give uninsured patients a discount. Second, patients can work with the billing department to agree upon a monthly payment plan. Upon your discahrge, the hospital will require an initial deposit, but the amount can be negotiable. Finally, you must remember that you will recieve separate bills from both your treating physician and the hospital itself. Overall, one’s unexpected healthcare expenses certainly do not have to be financially devastating.
Money obviously does not grow on trees, and these financial cushions must come from somewhere. This year, President Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will allow the Department of Health and Human Services to release several million dollars to promote health care in America. This act is the first step toward giving the gift of healthcare to every American in need.
If illness should strike in your household, do not become a statistic. Seek medical help for that which ails you. Doctors will be there to help you, both physically and financially. Just because your wallet is suffering, that doesn’t mean you have to as well. After all, if you don’t have your health, you truly have nothing at all.
International Medical Clinic
5979 Buford Hwy NE
Atlanta, GA 30340
(678) 547 – 0000
Good Samaritan Health Center of Gwinnett
3700 Club Dr
Lawrenceville, GA 30044
(678) 280 – 6630
Four Corners Primary Care Center
5030 Georgia Belle Ct
Norcross, GA 30093
(770) 806 – 2928
Gwinnett Community Clinic
2160 Fountain Drive
Snellville, Georgia 30078
(770) 985 – 1199
The Health Department
To locate your nearest health department, please visit http://health.state.ga.us/regional/index.asp.