Below is a funny letter to the editor from the Indianapolis Star - view the original
This advice works just fine if you can see the future. The problem for most people is that, they can't. If you don't have any health insurance and have over $4,000 to $5,000 worth of medical expenses, you're not going to be able to get health insurance. It's like trying to get homeowners insurance after your house burned down or auto insurance after you've totalled your car.
The Aug. 1 editorial, "Do-it-yourself fixes for high Health costs," neglected one significant step consumers can take to hold down costs: If you are relatively young and healthy, don't buy Health Insurance. Learn to distinguish between the cost of health insurance and the cost of treatment, and be aware that for the large majority insurance premiums are approximately five to 10 times the actual cost of medical care in any given year. For a family of four, the break-even point is about $4,000 to $5,000.
The best solution for the young and healthy is to get catastrophic health insurance that will give them an exposure similar to what James was talking about (between $4,000 to $5,000) in deductible or deductible/ coinsurance mix. Tonik from Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield is targeted right at that age group. The only problem with the Tonik plans is that they don't cover brand name prescriptions, but that is usually the lowest probability for that age group. It's all a gamble in the end.