Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like Reviews.com.

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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The lowdown...

  • Many Americans do not have health insurance, or they are looking for a better plan.
  • If you do not have insurance, you can still get health care.
  • You will have to pay for your care if you are uncovered, but they will not deny you treatment.
  • Clinics, walk-in facilities, and urgent care offer treatment to non-insured persons.
  • Your goal should be to obtain health insurance with an insurance company that has what you need to cover unexpected illnesses.


If you do not have health insurance, you are not alone. Many people have gone without health insurance in recent times due to the increase in overall health costs to individuals and families.

Start comparing health insurance rates now by using our FREE tool above!

Statistics on Health Insurance

 

A Gallup poll in July of 2014 reported that the number of uninsured people in the United States among adults aged 18 and older fell from 18% in the third quarter to 13.4% in the second quarter of 2014. The Rand Corporation had similar findings. One statistic that comes into play here is that unpaid hospital bills cost taxpayers between $40-$50 billion.

In 2012, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that there were 48.0 million people in the United States who did not have health insurance. That’s 15.4% of the population. So for those who have no health insurance, now they are faced with the reality of having to risk having no health insurance.

If they are in an accident or get an illness of any kind, they are going to be faced with the out-of-pocket expense for their health care.

This can be costly in the extreme. If you are among the people who are still without health insurance, what can you do? What hospital can you use with no insurance?

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The Facts About Uninsured Medical Patients

In an emergency situation, anyone may be treated, but if you have no insurance, you will be billed at the full price. You may qualify for Medicaid if your income is low enough, but you have to be between the $14,00-$47,000 range, depending on your tax filing status.

The Obamacare health site states that you will be taken care of in an emergency, but you will have to pay the bill if you are without insurance at the time of the accident.

What are some alternative choices if I have no health coverage?

  • Primary care doctor– Remember that you can still go to any doctor or hospital including primary care physicians, even if you are currently uncovered by health insurance. The fact that you do not have health coverage does not mean that you cannot get treatment. They will treat you at the time you present your sickness or injury. But you will get a bill for the full amount afterward that you will be legally responsible for.
  • Direct primary care doctor– This program was developed to assist people who are in-between on their health insurance or who do not have coverage at the time of a presenting illness. You just find a direct care primary care physician who is in this group of direct care physicians, and you pay a fee of around $49 per month for membership. Then, if you get sick and need to see a doctor, you can do so. This may be a good option until you find adequate health coverage.
  • Urgent care– Urgent care facilities are more common than they used to be and they offer a good alternative to emergency rooms.
    Billadvocates.com reminds you to not use an emergency room unless it is absolutely necessary in order to get help. Urgent care facilities are much better since they will let you get care immediately and you may only pay a portion of the bill.
  • Walk-in clinics– Walk-in clinics are another way that people can get help without going to a hospital. Remember that the more mainstream you go, the more it is going to cost, in general.
  • Community clinics– Community clinics are another option for people who are between health insurance. These clinics usually cater to low-income people and will take you for treatment even if you are currently uninsured. They will send you a bill at a lot of these locations, but you will likely not pay as much as you would if you went to more traditional hospitals.
  • Campus clinics– Campus clinics are located on the campuses of numerous colleges and universities across the country. They are designated for students primarily so you would have an advantage if you are a student. However, some might take minor cases or hold blood pressure screenings and take general health inquiries. Don’t expect to be able to use it regularly unless you are a student, though.

There are some other alternatives in seeking health care without insurance but the key to making sure you’ll get any quality care is to find adequate health coverage.

Three Options For Health Insurance

 

  • Government Insurance

Obamacare, the government-funded federal healthcare system is based on the new Affordable Care Act that was passed by Obama in 2010. The Act was supposed to pay for healthcare at a leveled rate that some view as “socialized medicine.” But it is less expensive in some cases when compared with private insurance companies.

Obamacare will avoid you being locked into an IRS debt that you will be responsible for in every month that you failed to carry insurance.

It is taken out of your income tax refund if you have one. A tax liability can be established for each month after January 2015 that you had no insurance.

  • Medicare or Medicaid

Some people get these two types of insurance mixed up. They are not the same, but they are both government-funded.

Medicare is the federal medical healthcare program designed to help U.S. Citizens who are 65 years of age or older. The only stipulation is that you had to have worked in a system that pays into Medicare for at least ten years.

Medicaid is a bit different, but it comes from the same source. Medicaid is for low-income individuals who qualify due to their low-income status. Children enrolled in the CHIPS program or who have a disability also may qualify for help.

  • Private Insurance Carriers

Private health insurance is the way that most people choose to go. This is because purchasing private insurance gives you more choice and flexibility in your plan, allows you to control your degree of coverage, choose your doctors, and more.

Private insurance is more costly than the standardized federal insurance programs such as Obamacare, but it puts the control back in your hands and lets you choose from a variety of programs and policies.

Among private health insurance companies, you will choose from one of these primary delivery models:

  • HMOs– HMOs are health management systems that allow you to get reduced health care with co-pays for doctors’ visits, exams, and general treatment. The idea behind HMOs are “preventive care” and they focus on offering a network of health care professionals that you can choose from at one lower price.
  • EPOs– EPOs are another option. These are exclusive provider organizations that focus on offering a specific provider that you must choose from. Like HMOs, if you choose to go outside the network, you will not be covered and will be forced to pay out-of-pocket expenses.
  • PPOs– PPOs are a preferred provider organization. They offer health care within a network, but you have the choice to go out of network. If you do, you will pay more for your care. But you still have the choice of doing so.
  • POS-Point-of-service is another option for your healthcare that you will have access to through private insurance carriers. These systems allow you to enjoy some of the advantages of both an HMO and a PPO. Ask an agent to explain how it works within your insurance policy before agreeing to it.

So don’t despair if you have no health insurance. There are many hospitals, clinics, and doctors who will take you and federal law states that they must help you, even if you are uninsured.

Enter your zip code in our FREE tool below to compare health insurance rates now!

However, the costs of your care will be mostly out-of-pocket without insurance. So, to protect your interests and keep you from getting into serious debt for health issues, you should have as your goal to find appropriate health insurance.