Medical costs – are you prepared?

Author : teriann

No one likes to be sick.  Some persons can’t bear the idea of being in a hospital. In fact I have friends who hate hospitals so badly that they refuse to go to a hospital even if to visit a close relative or friend.

Health Care System

The public health care system in Jamaica is free. However there are many hidden costs. For example you might have to wait many months for elective surgery while if admitted you might have to source your own equipment for selected procedures.

Since overcrowding is often an issue, securing a bed at a hospital might not be so easy which leads to many patients spending many nights on a stretcher in the passage way.

Equipment regularly breaks down in the public health system as I remember when visiting a family member that one of the elevators used for transport was sometimes out of service.

Pharmacies at hospitals face challenges as well. They often ran out of stock very quickly and so patients had to source these prescriptions outside of the hospital.

So is this really free health care?

Private Costs

There are those who are fortunate enough to have insurance and they might feel that they are safe from all those challenges because they will go to private health care. Is that really the case?

Well it depends on the type of insurance that you have and your level of coverage. Some persons are surprised when they learn how little coverage they really have on their insurance policies.  In fact some hardly cover hospital visits or serious illnesses.

A stay in a private hospital can also be very expensive if you are not prepared. These private hospital make note of and charge their patients for every material used so as to maintain their operating costs.

How can you prepare?

While no one wants to dwell on something bad happening to them that would necessitate a hospital stay, it is wise to plan ahead.

How can you do so? Well the first thing to do is to check your insurance coverage. Especially take into consideration your current level of health, age and family history.

Of course there are sudden illness that have no warning as well as accidents so regardless of our current situation we must have insurance that will provide for our needs. It makes sense to add to the policy which will impact on your monthly payments. However it makes sense to pay more now rather than later!

Doctor’s visits and tests are also covered by insurance and are a crucial part in the process of staying healthy.

So take care of yourself and be prepared!

Are you prepared for any medical costs? Let me hear from you!

Teri Ann Renee Paisley

Gleaner online writer

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