I must have slept the wrong way or have been careless at lifting weights in the gym yesterday, but whatever it was, I found my right shoulder sore and numb this morning.
Several years ago, I might have just popped a pain reliever, massaged some liniment on it and hoped that my shoulders would get better tomorrow.
But today, I do what only a few people I know would do for something this “minor” – go to the hospital.
The doctor, after subjecting me to a few tests, including an x-ray, concluded that it was just muscle fatigue and all I need is some Vitamin B complex and rest.
Glad that it was nothing so serious, I happily went to my HMO desk afterward. I gave the staff a copy of my P3,000 hospital bill which I DID NOT HAVE TO PAY. She stamped it and then told me, “You’re free to go home now, sir. Hope you feel better. Thank you.”
Many people, specially entrepreneurs and the self-employed, often ignore the importance of having health insurance. They often see it as a time-consuming process to undertake or worse, an unnecessary expense.
But time and again, I have personally proven that having medical coverage is not only financially smart, but also hugely beneficial to one’s health.
Several studies have shown that uninsured people are sicker and more apt to die prematurely than their insured counterparts. And those without health coverage tend to receive less timely medical care, which later on results to more serious illnesses that require more expensive treatments.
I know your common sense will agree to these facts.
But I can’t afford to have health insurance…
Are you sure you can’t afford it?
For Filipinos, if you can spare an extra P100 a month, then you can already become an individually paying member of PhilHealth and enjoy subsidy for room and board, drugs and medicines, laboratories, operating room and professional fees when you need it.
For a few pesos more, you can include your spouse, your children and even your parents as your dependents and they too will enjoy the same benefits.
Moreover, several Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO) in the country have affordable packages designed for self-employed individuals as well.
And the best thing about these medical coverage is that you can use it ON TOP of the benefits you get from PhilHealth!
It may look costly and “useless” at first, specially if you’re young, active and living a healthy lifestyle. But you really never know when you’ll encounter a medical emergency in your life.
And when that time comes, you’ll be glad that you have health insurance.
List of Health Maintenance Organizations in the Philippines
As of December 2009 from the DOH: DOWNLOAD HERE
P.S. Thanks to desertman for the link
This post is part of the Legacy Article on Steps To Becoming a Successful Freelancer.
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Randall R. Bovbjerg and Jack Hadley. “Why Health Insurance Is Important“. The Urban Institute Health Policy Briefs. November 2007
Photo credit: psit