IRVING, Texas, February 11, 2021 (Newswire.com) - OneShare Health, a Christian Health Care Sharing Ministry (HCSM) in Texas, has recently accepted an invitation to become a member of the Alliance of Health Care Sharing Ministries (AHCSM).
Founded in July 2007, the Alliance is currently headquartered in Washington, D.C. The organization's website states it was created for the purpose of "protecting and preserving the rights of their members."
Katy Talento, Executive Director of AHCSM, said that in addition to being recognized by the federal government as meeting the Affordable Care Act (ACA) definition of 'Health Care Sharing Ministries,' ministries that belong to the Alliance must have a clear religious identity, an independent board that actively oversees the organization, rigorously managed financial operations, and be transparent with the public about their finances, health care sharing model, and how they differ from other health care solutions.
"We were very impressed with OneShare Health's leadership," said Talento, "including Interim CEO Buddy Combs, Nancy Atkins, and the entire team that works on government affairs, since that is such a key priority for the Alliance. They were critical partners in working with other ministries to develop robust standards against which Health Care Sharing Ministries should be evaluated."
Nancy Atkins, Chief Regulatory Officer at OneShare Health says OneShare's leadership is excited by the prospect of collaborating with other ministries not only because it will create a path for OneShare Health to continue facilitating a viable alternative to health care, but also for the opportunity to better their Members' overall experience.
"We feel that by working together we can accomplish more than each ministry may be able to do independently," said Atkins. "The Alliance gives us a greater voice when it comes to issues that affect us all, and it also allows OneShare Health the opportunity to lend our talents, and the talents of our legal and regulatory staff, for the greater good."
Advocates in public policy at state and federal levels, the Alliance works on issues impacting Health Care Sharing Ministries, and provide support through public relations and media to present a true and accurate representation of HCSMs.
Citing their "transformative" and "wholesome" effect on the country, Talento said that HCSMs also cut out many of the middlemen in the health care supply chain that "merely take value out of the system rather than adding value."
"Most don't realize that Health Care Sharing Ministries are actually leading the way in driving down the cost of health care through their robust price negotiation and patient navigation services," explained Talento. "HCSMs are a beautiful way that like-minded believers come together in community to bear one another's burdens. In the midst of a pandemic and the resulting economic crisis, it's more important than ever that all Americans have access to a health care solution that is consistent with their budgets and their beliefs."
Interim CEO of OneShare Buddy Combs said he and the Ministry's Leadership Team are honored to be a part of something so important. "We are incredibly excited for this opportunity to join together with some organizations we greatly respect and admire," said Combs. "The objective of the Alliance is to gather together likeminded sharing organizations to discuss and work on issues which affect us all. Just like OneShare's slogan of Better Together, there are a great many things in which working together is better for all HCSMs. We are grateful that they have trusted us to join their ranks as a member."
"Our participation shows we value protecting Members' interests along with the interests of the Members of our brother and sister ministries," continued Combs. "Members can also feel confident that they have selected a Health Care Sharing Ministry that is respected by others in this industry."
Talento, having worked in health policy for decades, said she spent years enrolled in health insurance plans before becoming a member of a Health Care Sharing Ministry, where she said she found "mutual accountability and encouragement in stewarding our bodies faithfully," unlike traditional health insurance.
"Health care is personal," stated Talento. "It's where we're all at our most vulnerable and most in need of fellowship that can share both the spiritual and the financial burden. Ministry members are right there with prayers and kindness and financial support when things go wrong. When we're in a health crisis, we want to turn to the Body of Christ, not a cold bureaucracy that answers to Wall Street."
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Source: OneShare Health