Medical discount cards aren't insurance
States are warning consumers about aggressive - and false - sales pitches for medical discount cards.
Enter medical discount cards. They're promoted in advertisements and telephone marketing campaigns as having no deductibles or co-pays and give the illusion that having one is the same as having health insurance.
Make no mistake, medical discount cards are not insurance. Several state attorneys general have issued warnings about the sales pitches.
"Many medical discount programs claim that they can offer big savings on doctor’s visits, dental exams or prescriptions, but they fail to make good on those claims," Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel said. "Consumers should be skeptical of these kinds of promises and should ask for as much information as possible before agreeing to enroll in a discount program."
A California man is suing another health discount card issuer after suffering a stroke and learning that his maximum benefit was $4,500. Costs of his medical care exceeded $400,000.
Here are some suggestions from the attorney general in Arkansas to anyone thinking about signing up for one of these discount cards:
- Remember that discount programs are not health insurance, even if they claim to be.
- Get a list of their participating providers and what discounts or services they are offering to those with the card before signing up.
- If it is difficult to get that information, look elsewhere.
- Find out about the refund policy.
- Do the math and make sure that what you spend on the program results in actual savings.
- Why your overdraft protection is costing you
- More data breaches mean larger fraud risks
- The top travels rewards cards
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.
ABOUT SMART SPENDING
LATEST BLOG POSTS
A WisePiggy.com poll found that many Americans, especially older ones, do little or nothing to protect their credit scores and reports. See why you should check your credit history.
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
BLOGS WE LIKE
MUST-SEE ON MSN
- Video: Easy DIY smoked meats at home
A charcuterie master shares his process for cold-smoking meat at home.
- Jetpacks about to go mainstream
- Weird things covered by home insurance
- Bing: 70 percent of adults report 'digital eye strain'