Health sharing – an affordable alternative to traditional health insurance –is becoming immensely popular across the country. All health sharing organizations require members to agree to a set of principles or statements of faith.
Healthshare Statements of Faith Guide 2023
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the common elements of many health sharing organizations’ statements. And we’ll look at the specific language of each statement for the largest and best health sharing organizations. So you can choose the ones that best match your own personal beliefs and medical situation.
What Is Health Sharing?
Health Sharing is a mechanism that allows like-minded individuals and families to come together as a community to share each other’s medical expenses. Every month, members of health sharing plans contribute a set amount that is shared between the other members to pay their medical bills.
Non-profit health sharing ministry organizations – usually but not always faith-based organizations – facilitate the cost sharing by collecting contributions to members and getting them to other members in need.
As health care costs continue to escalate beyond the rate of inflation, they are attracting hundreds of thousands of new adherents. One big reason: They save money! Health sharing approaches routinely save Americans up to 50% compared to the cost of unsubsidized traditional health insurance solutions.
A big part of why health sharing ministries can generate savings of this magnitude is that they screen members according to their beliefs and lifestyles.
Common Elements of Health Sharing Ministry Statements of Faith
Health sharing plan members usually must affirm in writing that they don’t use illegal drugs or abuse alcohol. To the extent members are truthful in applying, that simple restriction significantly reduces exposure to massive costs: Health sharing plans rarely have to pay for treatments of alchoholism-related disorders or drug overdoses.
And they typically exclude drug and alcoholism rehab costs.
Most health sharing organizations do not require members to attend a specific church or even attend regular services. MPB Health, for instance, is an excellent example of a great health sharing plan that takes a secular, non-religious approach to health sharing.
Some (not all) require members to adhere to a religious faith, and a few of them even require applicants to show that they attend services regularly.
This results in a much healthier pool of members compared to traditional health insurance companies, who have to take all comers, regardless of their drug abuse history, alcoholism, or other medically-significant negative behaviors.
Also, unlike health insurance carriers, health sharing ministry organizations can legally screen out or restrict sharing benefits for new members with pre-existing conditions.
Members collectively benefit from the massive reduction in health care utilization, thanks to a much healthier membership pool.
Health sharing is a great alternative for people who don’t receive a significant Obamacare subsidy, are in reasonably good health, and who are willing to sign on to a health sharing ministry organization’s statement of belief.
What is a Healthshare Plan?
Healthsharing plans are organizations that help shield member individuals from financial shocks from unexpected and unaffordable medical expenses.
How does Health Sharing Differ from Insurance?
While they do provide risk transfer and serve a similar function to insurance companies, they are not themselves health insurance plans.
Instead, they are arrangements whereby a health sharing organization facilitates the sharing of large medical expenses over a certain pre-defined annual amount among willing and like-minded fellow members.
Health sharing has advantages and disadvantages. The chief advantage is that health sharing plans typically cost just a fraction of a comparable unsubsidized traditional health insurance premium.
They are therefore very popular among those who don’t qualify for an Obamacare subsidy.
They don’t force members to subsidize procedures they object to or are not likely to need, such as abortion or drug and alcohol addictions treatment.
They are freedom-based. With a majority of healthshares there are no “care networks,” or other outside restrictions on what doctors you can use. You can use your health sharing benefits at any doctor that provides services eligible for sharing under your plan rules.
Health sharing may not be right for you if you have significant pre-existing conditions, or if you qualify for a significant Affordable Care Act subsidy for health insurance, or if you get a plan from your employer.
Compare Pricing on the Best Healthshare Plans Available
Religious vs. Secular Health Sharing Ministry Organizations
Most but not all health sharing ministry organizations have a religious or faith-based aspect to their statements of belief. A few organizations are secular in nature. They don’t require members to sign on to any religious beliefs whatsoever.
Of the religious organizations, some have more stringent requirements than others. For example, some health sharing ministries don’t just ask you to sign a statement of belief, but also ask you to provide documentation that you are an active member of your church or synagogue.
Most of the religious health sharing ministries are Christian. At least one organization was created for the Jewish community. And some profess a belief in God, but are non-denominational.
Here are the statements of belief or statements of faith for some of the top health sharing ministry organizations in the country.
It’s up to you to decide which of these organizations best comport with your own personal values and beliefs.
Also, the information below is current as of November, 2022. They may be subject to change.
Healthshare Carrier Statements of Faith
Altrua’s Statements of Faith
Our members agree to live a clean and healthy lifestyle and share a set of ethical and religious beliefs. It means that our members can contribute less and receive more from the membership.
Statement of Standards
- We care for one another.
- We keep our bodies clean and healthy with proper nutrition.
- We believe the use of any form of tobacco, illicit drugs and excessive alcohol consumption is harmful to the body and soul.
- We believe sexual relations outside the bond of marriage is contrary to the teachings of the Bible and that marriage should be held in honor.
- We believe abortion is wrong, except in a life-threatening situation to the mother.
- We care for our families and physical, mental or emotional abuse of any kind to a family member or anyone else is morally wrong.
Not available in FL and MT
Joppa’s Statements of Faith
- We believe it is our right to make our own decisions regarding health care, in consultation with physicians, family and/or other valued advisors, free from government dictates, restraints and oversight.
- We believe that the Bible is God’s Word to teach, correct, and train us to live. – 2 Timothy 3:16-17
- We believe our actions must be in accordance with Biblical teachings.
- We believe it is our spiritual duty to God and our ethical duty to others to maintain a healthy lifestyle and avoid foods, behaviors or habits that produce sickness or disease to ourselves or others. – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
- We believe it is our biblical and ethical obligation to assist others with medical needs according to our available resources and opportunity. – Galatians 6:2
Not available in CO, MA, MD, MT, NM, PA, VT and WA.
– Has a health sharing plan designed specifically to work with Medicare
– Medi-Share’s innovative “65+” health sharing Plan is a possible alternative to Medicare Supplement and Medicare Advantage
Medi-Share’s Statements of Faith
Christian Care Ministry is committed to serving the Christian community with excellence and integrity, using the Bible as our foundation. In order to maintain these principles, all members agree to and profess the following Statement of Faith:
- I believe that there is only one God eternally existing in three Persons: the Father, Jesus Christ the Son, and the Holy Spirit. I believe Jesus is God, in equal standing with the Father and the Holy Spirit.
- I believe the Bible is God’s written revelation to mankind, divinely given through human authors who were inspired with the Holy Spirit. It is completely authoritative, and entirely true.
- I believe in the deity of Jesus Christ who existed as God before anything was created, His virgin birth, sinless life, miracles, death on the cross to provide for our redemption, bodily resurrection and ascension into heaven, present ministry of intercession for us and His return to earth in power and glory. He is the world’s only Savior and is the Lord of all.
- I believe in the personality and deity of the Holy Spirit, that He performs the miracle of new birth in an unbeliever and indwells believers, enabling them to live a godly life.
- I believe man was created in the image of God, but because of sin was alienated from God. Alienation can be removed by accepting God’s gift of salvation by grace through faith which was made possible by Christ’s death and resurrection. This faith will be evidenced by the works that we do.
– Not available in MT and PA.
- At Mpowering Benefits, no one is declined for membership based on religious affiliation or belief.
- Part of the Zion family.
- Uses same Principles of Membership as Zion below
- A good option for those looking for or open to a non-denominational or secular approach.
- Along with Zion, currently the only family of Health Share plans that offers a health sharing plan eligible for health savings accounts (HSAs)
Not available in WA.
netWell’s Statement of Religious and Ethical Beliefs:
- We believe in the God of the Bible and the Power of Prayer. Philippians 4:6, NIV: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanks- giving, present your requests to God.”
- We believe it is our Duty to Love and Accept one another. –John 13:34, NIV: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”
- We believe it is our obligation to God and our fellow members to Live a healthy lifestyle which avoids habits and behaviors that are harmful to the body.
1 Corinthians 10:31, NIV: “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
- We believe it is our ethical and moral responsibility to Carry each other’s Burdens. Galatians 6:2, NIV: “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”
Not available in MA, MD, NM, PA, VT, and WA.
OneShare’s Statements of Faith
- …in the authority of Scripture and the sanctity and dignity of every human life created by God with special meaning and purpose. – II Timothy 3:16; Psalm 139:13-14
- …that every individual has the constitutional and religious right and duty to worship God in freedom. – II Corinthians 3:17; U.S. Const. amend. I
- …and agree in the biblical and ethical principle of sharing with those who are less fortunate and who experience medical needs. – Galatians 6:2
- …and agree that it is our responsibility to God and our fellow Members to engage in accountable, healthy living, and to avoid habits and behaviors which are harmful to the body. – I Corinthians 6:19-20
- …in the power of prayer to save lives, to heal lives, and to unite our Members in common purpose and community, and we believe that prayer should be a fundamental practice of daily life. – I John 5:14; Philippians 4:6-7”
Not available in MD, NM, PA, VT, MA, WA.
– Among the more restrictive statement of belief/membership requirements
– Requires verification of regular attendance at Christian services.
– Does not recognize Mormon, Jehovah’s Witness, Unitarian, Scientology, and other churches it regards as “falling outside the Biblical Christian faith” as qualifying for membership.
Samaritan Ministries’ Statements of Faith
Our membership requirements strive to encourage Christian maturity and foster accountability and a healthy lifestyle. Therefore, we ask that all members agree to our Statement of Faith and to our Membership Agreement below:
- We believe in the triune God of the Bible. He is one God Who is revealed in three distinct Persons—God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
- We believe Jesus Christ was God in the flesh, and continues to be such even after His resurrection—fully God and fully man. He was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins, was bodily resurrected on the third day, and now is seated in the heavens at the right hand of God the Father.
- We believe that all people have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory and can be saved from eternal death only through faith in Jesus Christ, Whose atoning death and resurrection secures for us eternal life.
- Attend a Christian church regularly (at least three out of four weeks per month that your health or weather permits). If it is not possible for you to regularly attend a Christian church, please submit a letter giving the details.
- Fellowships, churches, temples, wards, and denominations that fall outside of Biblical, Christian faith—such as the Church of Scientology, Unitarian, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints—do not qualify for the church attendance requirement.
- Believe you are to bear one another’s burdens.
- Agree to: not abuse any legal or prescribed substance, abstain totally from illegal drugs and recreational use of marijuana, and abstain from tobacco use (a rare celebratory cigar or pipe, e.g. when a baby is born, is allowed).
- Limit consumption of alcohol to moderate amounts and never drink to drunkenness, or cause another brother or sister in Christ to stumble.
- Abstain from any sexual activity outside of traditional Biblical marriage as designed by God between one man and one woman.
- Agree to practice good health measures in accordance with the principle that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit.
- Keep your membership active by promptly sending your monthly assigned share to all regular needs assigned to you in your monthly newsletter mailing or eShare notification.
- Agree that when you have a dispute with a fellow Christian, and your fellow Christian is willing to submit that dispute to fellow believers for resolution, you are not to sue each other in the civil courts or other government agencies.
- Sign and send in your Membership Continuation Form each year, confirming that you are still meeting the above requirements.
- Have your pastor or Christian church leader sign a statement confirming that you meet the above requirements.
- You will be required to agree to these requirements when you apply for membership and provide background information including your date of birth.
- You will need to reconfirm that you still meet these requirements annually.
– No affiliation with any religious group.
– A good option for those seeking a secular or non-denominational approach.
Sedera’s Statement of Ethical Beliefs and Principals.
The Members of the Sedera Medical Cost Sharing Community are united by a shared faith in the following beliefs and principles. As a demonstration of these beliefs and principles we have decided to come together — from all backgrounds, nationalities, ethnicities, and races — to support each other and share in eligible medical Needs according to the member sharing Guidelines.
Each Member accepts the beliefs of this community as laid out in these Ethical Beliefs and Principles:
- We share a faith in each other and in the strength of our community.
- We believe improving the lot of humankind, present, and future, is a virtuous goal and that it is an expression of our moral and ethical responsibility to endeavor to voluntarily support our fellow community members.
- We believe that as a community we should care for one another and assist fellow members with each other’s medical burdens when the opportunity and resources allow. We strive to share with others as we would like them to share with us.
- We believe in the importance of charity and benevolence as well as the social duties of voluntariness, integrity, honesty, and personal responsibility.
- We believe in personal accountability for our decisions and responsible stewardship of all that is entrusted to us and share faith that all members of our community will be empowered to apply these beliefs and principles in their day-to-day lives.
- We believe that the use of illegal substances or the act of performing an illegal or unlawful activity is harmful to the community and ourselves.
- We believe in respecting our bodies, practicing good health measures, avoiding harmful substances and addictions, and striving for a balanced lifestyle.
- We believe it is a basic right to make our own health decisions and to pursue the advice of learned physicians and advisors, spiritual or otherwise, in determining our own health decisions.
- We believe that we have a fundamental right guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution to freely associate in the lawful exercise of our common beliefs to voluntarily share health care expenses with one another. We believe that a community of ethical and health-conscious people can most effectively encourage and care for one another by sharing each other’s medical needs directly.
- We believe in the power of educated, informed, and empowered healthcare consumers to generate value for themselves, the community, and the American healthcare system.
– A Catholic healthshare ministry. However, you don’t have to be Catholic to join.
– Abortion, genetic testing, euthenasia, sex reassignment surgery, and certain other costs are not eligble for sharing, to protect the consciences of all members.
Solidarity Healthshare’s Statements of Faith
We ask that each Member affirm the following Shared Beliefs:
- We believe that our personal rights and liberties originate from and are bestowed on us by God and are not concessions granted to us by governments or men.
- We believe that every person has a right to exercise his or her religion without interference or coercion. While we do not hold that every claim made in the name of religion has equal merit or equal basis in truth, we do respect each person’s freedom of both religious worship and practice.
- We believe it is our moral and ethical obligation to be our brother’s or sister’s keeper, in recognition of the principle of solidarity, according to our God-given resources and opportunity.
- We believe in the virtue of temperance, which enables us to maintain a healthy lifestyle and avoid foods, behaviors, or habits that could produce sickness or disease.
- We believe it is our fundamental right of conscience to direct our own healthcare in consultation with Physicians, family, or other valued advisors, free from government dictates, restraints, and oversight, including federal or state contraception and abortion mandates and all unethical practices or mandates.
Maintain a Virtuous Lifestyle
- “The human person, created in the image of God, is a being at once corporeal and spiritual” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 362). Because Members believe that we are made in God’s image, we must respect and care for our bodies. Guided by the Church’s teachings, Members must maintain a lifestyle that demonstrates a profound respect for the human person in both his spiritual and physical aspects.
- To qualify as a Sharing Member, an applicant must comply with the lifestyle requirements detailed in these Guidelines. Members must also submit a thorough account of their medical history. In general, a virtuous lifestyle includes, but is not limited to:
- Exercising the virtue of temperance to avoid every kind of excess, including, but not limited to the abuse of food, tobacco, alcohol, and medicine (over-the-counter or prescription drugs) (Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 2290).
- Abstaining from the use of illegal drugs. Illegal drugs include but are not limited to any banned pharmaceuticals; non- prescribed pharmaceuticals; synthetic drugs; hallucinogenic substances; barbiturates; amphetamines; cocaine, heroin, or other opiates; marijuana; illegal intravenous drugs; narcotics; and all substances declared to be illegal (Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 2291).
- Intentionally incorporating exercise and good nutrition into one’s life. Solidarity HealthShare Members have a moral obligation to maintain their health so as not to place any unnecessary burdens on their fellow Members who Share in their healthcare costs.
- These beliefs form the religious and ethical basis for our interaction and community relationships. Each Member agrees to the Statement of Shared Beliefs by signing the application form. We make a solemn and significant pledge to one another that we will aid, support, and devote our resources to one another as we pursue healthcare that respects our dignity.
United Refuah Healthshare
– The first and thus far the only Jewish-based health sharing ministry organization in operation.
– Requires pre-approval on many procedures before an expense is eligible for sharing.
United Refuah’s Statements of Faith
“…Every member of United Refuah HealthShare is expected to strive to live in accordance with the following beliefs:
- A loving, kind, and ethical G-d wishes to reward His creations for doing the right thing.
- G-d communicated these desires to mankind, and these Divine commandments state that there are certain values and behavioral norms that He demands of all mankind. These demands constitute a universal moral code and include, but are not limited to:We believe that personal rights and liberties that we possess are divinely ordained and not merely concessions granted to us by mankind and/or their governments. The same is true for our obligations and restrictions.We believe that every individual of Jewish religion must worship the G-d of the Torah and only the G-d of the Torah.
We believe that every individual of Jewish religion must abide by the ethical and practical laws and lifestyles of Judaism, which is based upon the dictates of the Torah.
We believe that it is our ethical obligation, according to the Torah, to assist our fellow man in need.We believe that we are required to maintain a healthy lifestyle and to avoid behaviors or habits that put our well-being at risk.
We believe in the value of every moment of human life and, as such, we have a fundamental right to make our own health care decisions in consultation with medical, family, religious, and other advisors of our choosing, and that these decisions must not be dictated by the government, the insurance industry, and/or other unwelcome outsiders.
We believe that we are accountable to G-d and to our fellow members for our use of communal resources and, as such, we will demonstrate responsibility for the sharing funds provided by other members.
- A belief that by observing these laws, man can ever improve, obtain meaning for his life in this world, and achieve his ultimate reward in the next world. It must be emphasized that this reward is merit based. It is earned only after living in accordance with the proper moral code not merely by believing in something or someone.
- A belief that the ideas of this universal moral code actually represent categories that include sub-categories. For example, the belief in the One G-d includes seeking to understand the nature of G-d and emulating Him. The prohibition against adultery encompasses prohibitions against incest as well. The prohibition against stealing includes all forms of robbery or theft, including the theft of intellectual property.
- A belief that the universal moral code provides society and civilization with a strong foundation and structure for moral growth, as well as a fair, merit-based, straightforward manner in which to earn an eternal reward.”
Maintain a Jewish Lifestyle.
Members highly value the spiritual principle that our bodies are gifts from G-d and that we must respect and care for our physical well-being. Furthermore, we have an ethical obligation to live a healthy lifestyle so as not to place an unnecessary burden on those who are sharing with us.
To qualify as a Sharing Member, an Applicant must submit a detailed account of his/her medical history and comply with the lifestyle requirements contained in these Guidelines. In general, this lifestyle includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Refraining from using all forms of nicotine (including, but not limited to: cigarettes, cigars, pipes, e-cigarettes, vaping, and dip/chew) and marijuana products regardless of legality in your local area.
- Following scriptural teachings on the use or abuse of alcohol.
- Following scriptural teachings on relationships, including, but not limited to, refraining from any form of promiscuous or out-of-wedlock relationships.
- Avoiding abuse of prescription drugs. Abuse means consuming prescription medications in a manner not intended by the prescriber that may result in bodily harm or dependency.
- Abstaining entirely from the use of illegal drugs, including, but not limited to, any hallucinogenic substance, barbiturates, amphetamines, cocaine, heroin or other opiates, marijuana, illegal intravenous drugs or narcotics.
- Engaging in regular exercise and limiting food choices that are harmful.
Universal’s Statement of Shared Faith and Principles
- We believe in the inherent worth and dignity of every person, and that a person’s happiness, spiritual growth, and potential to do good for themselves and others is inextricably tied to their physical health, and that each person has a fundamental right to make their own health care decisions, in consultation with their family, physicians, and other chosen advisors, free from government interference.
- We believe in peace, liberty, justice, equity, and compassion in human relations, and that we improve ourselves and the world around us whenever we strive to reach that goal, whether or not we ultimately achieve it, and that those things require not just individual, but collective effort and the fostering of a true sense of community that extends beyond familiar boundaries.
- We believe in the importance of respecting the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part, and that recognizing that interdependence on a universal level first requires moving beyond individualism and experiencing interdependence on a community level.
- We believe in the importance of being open to life’s great mysteries, and that it is a sacred right and responsibility to search for the truth and meaning behind those mysteries, and that the success of such searching requires that we not be isolated and self-centered, but rather that we develop relationships and connect with other people and remain open to their viewpoints.
- We believe that the most effective way to encourage spiritual growth, respect for the interdependence of all existence, and the search for the truth and meaning is to participate in a community built on shared traditions that promotes acceptance and support by and among its members.
- We believe that we have a spiritual and ethical duty to our family and other members of our community to make responsible and healthy life choices, such as avoiding foods, activities, and behaviors that cause or exacerbate illness, disease or injury.
- We believe it is our sacred duty to assist those in need when we have the ability to do so.
– Welcomes members of all faiths
– Abortion costs are not eligible for sharing.
– Fertility treatment costs are not eligible for sharing.
– Genetic screening is not eligible for sharing
– MPB Health (formerly MPowering Benefits) is part of the Zion family
– Along with MPB Health, currently the only family of Health Share plans that offers a health sharing plan eligible for health savings accounts (HSAs)
– Great to match with Direct Primary Care plans.
Zion Health’s Principles of Membership
“Each member of Zion HealthShare must comply with the following requirements to maintain membership with Zion HealthShare and remain eligible to participate in the medical cost sharing program. Adherence to the Zion HealthShare Principles of Membership minimizes medical risks, encourages good health practices, and ensures member integrity and accountability.
Zion HealthShare community members are expected to act with honor and integrity. Members should not falsify a medical need request, medical records, or use other deceptive practices. If a member abuses the trust of Zion HealthShare and its members, their membership may be revoked.
All Zion HealthShare members must attest to the following statements:
- I believe that a community of ethical, health-conscious people can most effectively care for one another by directly sharing the costs associated with each other’s healthcare needs. I acknowledge that Zion HealthShare affiliates itself with, and considers itself accountable to, a higher power. I recognize that Zion HealthShare welcomes members of all faiths.
- I understand that Zion HealthShare is a benevolent organization, not an insurance entity, and that Zion HealthShare cannot guarantee payment of medical expenses.
- I have and will continue to practice good health measures and strive for a balanced lifestyle. I agree to abstain from the use of any illicit or illegal drugs and refrain from excessive alcohol consumption, acts which are harmful to the body. I understand that members who use tobacco will have an increased monthly contribution (per household) of $50.
- I am obligated to care for my family. I believe that mental, physical, emotional, or other abuse of a family member, or any other person, is morally wrong. I am committed to treating my family and others with care and respect at all times.
- I agree to submit to mediation followed by subsequent binding arbitration, if needed, for any instance of a dispute with Zion HealthShare or its affiliates.
Healthshare Statements of Faith Difference
It’s not just a matter of choosing a health sharing plan based on their statement of faith or similar document. Just as each health sharing ministry organization has a different statement of faith, every organization has different sets of benefits and exclusions, different plan tiers, and different pricing.
The best way to choose a health sharing plan is to work with an agent who specializes specifically in health sharing.
Most health insurance agents don’t do that. Most health insurance agents rely on high premiums which generate their commissions.
Health sharing premiums are so much lower than health insurance plans that many agents won’t even tell you about them!
And you won’t find them listed on the Obamacare exchanges!
Instead, call one of our highly-qualified, experienced Personal Benefits Managers at HSA for America!
Our PBMs have a specific focus on helping Americans save money through health sharing plans, high-deductible health plans, health savings accounts, direct primary care plans, and other innovative, money-saving alternatives.
Our services are always free to you. And one conversation can easily save you thousands of dollars per year, compared to unsubsidized health insurance costs and bloated premiums.
To learn more, click here for more information about the power of the health sharing concept.
And to make an appointment with a PBM to discuss your individual situation, or that of your small business and employees, click here.