a doctor giving a high five to a young boy as he sits on his mother's lap
Home / Research & Publications / Health Care Sharing Ministries

Health Care Sharing Ministries

Faith-Based Sharing Review (FbSR)

Demotech developed its Faith-Based Sharing Review process to evaluate various components of individual health care sharing ministries, including financial information, program guidelines, management and operational practices, and historical operating results, and provide an opinion as to the ministry’s capability to serve its members.

Health Care Sharing Ministries

Subject to certain requirements, health care sharing ministries (HCSMs) allow members who share a common set of ethical or religious beliefs to share medical expenses among themselves.  HCSMs are not insurance and are not subject to insurance regulations. HCSMs and their members are not obligated to share in the payment of medical expenses incurred by other members, and payments to members are not guaranteed; rather, HCSMs facilitate the voluntary sharing of eligible medical expenses under their program guidelines.  HCSMs may offer a cost-effective alternative to traditional health insurance and are an increasingly popular option for many consumers.

Members of health care sharing ministries may be exempt from the individual mandate in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) under 26 USC 5000A(d)(2)(B).  Some states may have additional regulations relating to health insurance and HCSMs.  All consumers should consult their health care sharing ministry and/or the appropriate state agency to understand any legal requirements and available exemptions for members of health care sharing ministries.

Notice to Consumers

Demotech’s FbSR report is not a recommendation for a consumer to use any particular health care sharing ministry or to participate in a health care cost sharing program, and does not constitute a warranty or guarantee that a health care sharing ministry will pay for any health care costs or liabilities or provide any particular service to a consumer.  Health care sharing ministries and their members are not obligated to share in the payment of medical expenses incurred by other members, and payments to members are not guaranteed. Nothing in an FbSR report creates any obligations between a health care sharing ministry and its members or prospective members. Consumers must evaluate their own needs and circumstances when making financial and health care decisions, including healthcare sharing decisions.