Contractor sidelined by surgery, CHM helps prevent financial ruin

By Carol Shuler, Cameron Park, Calif.

From the November 2018 issue of Heartfelt Magazine.

My husband, Jim, and I joined CHM in early 2014 after hearing about it on our local Christian radio station. We were looking for an affordable healthcare solution and couldn’t believe it was available through the ministry’s Gold and Brother’s Keeper programs. We soon found, however, that CHM is everything it claims to be.

We like to maintain a healthy lifestyle but over the next several years still incurred bills from a number of minor medical incidents. CHM was faithful to share all of our eligible costs.

In 2017 Jim’s right hip and lower back started causing him pain. A chiropractor recommended an X-ray, so we took a trip to see our general practitioner. After seeing the X-ray her words were, “You need a new hip. There’s nothing else we can do.”

Her words frightened us because Jim is a self-employed building contractor and doesn’t have paid vacation or sick time. We also weren’t quite ready to retire and knew that a medical expense of this size could ruin us financially.

We called CHM’s Member Assistance department to see if the costs of the hip replacement would be shared. They said yes and we were grateful—but still a little scared about what it would take to negotiate the large bills we knew would come. (Editor’s note: Hip replacements are considered pre-existing if you have any signs, symptoms, testing or treatment before joining CHM. Your medical records may be requested. Please see Guidelines Z and AA or the Oct. 2018 issue of Heartfelt Magazine for info about CHM’s programs for pre-existing conditions.)

Jim underwent a successful surgery that June and, as expected, the bills started rolling in. The charges totaled almost $182,000. Sherry Noland and Tina Mickunas of CHM’s Member Advocate department worked diligently to coach us on how to talk to the hospital and request discounts. We spoke more frequently with Sherry and she always assured us that things were going to be OK, which gave us peace.

After nearly $36,000 in discounts CHM members shared almost $146,000! It has been over a year since Jim’s surgery and he’s doing remarkably well. He can do everything he did prior to his health setback.

We’ve learned to trust God at a deeper level than before. As a result we are able to encourage others with our story.

Because of this experience we’ve resolved to stay CHM members for a long, long time. The ministry has blessed us greatly and we want to bless others.

Editor’s note: To view fair pricing for healthcare treatment and procedures in your area, visit healthcarebluebook.com.

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