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FAQs, Tips & Advice
Health Insurance

Life Insurance

 

Health Insurance

Health Insurance Resources In All 50 States & DC
See the low cost insurance programs you're eligible for. Just enter your state and answer a few questions.

10 Ways To Avoid Outrageous Hospital Overcharges
Profit-hungry hospitals are overcharging consumers an estimated
$10 billion a year. Some deliberately work to keep bills indecipherable.
Here's how to fight back.

Managed Care (Consumer-SOS)
Choosing a health plan, getting them to treat you right, and where to complain and get help. 

Healthlinkplus.org
Index of health topics grouped by subject.  Links are arranged under "Health Insurance", "General Health Information", "Alternative Medicine", "Medical Research", "Health Care Providers",   "Mental Health", and "Evaluating Health Information On the Internet".

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Life Insurance

FAQs On Life Insurance

Viatical Settlements 

Last Acts
Links and brochures on death related issues.

For More Help See Consumer-SOS/Insurance

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Free Or Low Cost Insurance

The Artists' Health Insurance Resource Center-AHIRC
Their mission: That every artist in the US has affordable, quality health insurance and health care.
With in-person counseling in New York and Los Angeles, national telephone support, and more than one hundred Getting and Keeping Health Insurance workshops offered at arts, cultural and human services organizations throughout the country, AHIRC works to reduce the number of uninsured artists and expand access to quality, affordable health care.
For more information, contact us at 323.933.9244 ext. 32 in Los Angeles, or 212-221-7300 ext. 265 in New York.

Low Cost Help For The Uninsured-The United Way (50 States & DC)
2-1-1 is a free and confidential service that helps people across North America find the local resources they need. We're here for you 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Call 211 or Select Your State, select your city, and look up help numerous help agencies. Their stellar search engine can lead you to any social service topic you can think of.  Just type in words related to your search such as ""uninsured" and "medical" or "uninsured" and "clinic."

Patient Advocacy Foundation
Select your medical problem, the state you live in, and up to 4 types of Assistance Needed (Can select up to four services at a time). Press control to select multiple resources. Shows public and non profit groups that can help the uninsured patient navigate their access to healthcare, deal with the financial cost of treatment, gather options for future health insurance coverage and work to effectively manage and decrease costs while seeking medical care. They are dedicated to helping patients with chronic, debilitating or life-threatening illnesses.

Financial Aid Fund Division-Patient Advocate Foundation (855) 824-7941 (Toll-Free)
This independent division of Patient Advocate Foundation provides small grants to patients who meet financial and medical criteria. Grants are provided on first-come first served basis and are distributed until funds are depleted. Qualifications and processes for each fund may differ based on fund requirements. Patients who are interested in applying for financial assistance should start by calling this division toll free at (855) 824-7941. The small grant programs under the Financial Aid Fund division are not part of PAF’s Co-Pay Relief assistance program and operate independently from other case management services.

NeedHelpPayingmyBills (State By State Assistance) 
To help pay medical bills, taxes, rent and mortgage help, etc.

Find The Lowest Insurance Rates (Consumer-SOS)
Insurance web sites that give you on line quotes and let you compare rates.

Health Resources In All 50 States & DC
Enter your state and answer a few questions for the resources you can qualify for.

Where Else To Go For Help (Consumer-SOS)

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Free Or Low Cost Health Clinics

Free Or Low Cost Health Clinic Finder (Throughout US)

Find A Health Clinic In Your State, City and County (All 50 States, DC, Guam, Etc)
This web site will help you find a clinic for medical care, even if you have no medical insurance or money.

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Medicare/Medicaid

Medicaid In All The 50 States (Gov Offices, Articles & Links)
This site has selected links to information about existing Medicaid plans. Medicaid is a federal-state partnership, with state laws, state regulations, federally approved state waivers, and approved "state plans" all creating significant variations from state to state.
 

Medicare
(FAQs & Links)

Medicare Preventive Services

The Medicare Rights Center (Advocacy Group With National Help Line)
Call their national helpline, to consult with knowledgeable counselors about a wide range of Medicare-related issues, including how to reduce premium and prescription drug costs and how to appeal a denial by an HMO or Part D plan.  Or use this national, nonprofit consumer service organization as an advocate to lobby your cause or get the ear of your law maker. 

The Medicaid Clearing House
Has links and articles on government benefits.

Medicare Worksheet For Comparing Health Plans

Your Medicare Benefits

Social Security & Medicare/Medicaid (Nolo)

Healthlinkplus.org
Index of health topics grouped by subject.  Links are arranged under "Health Insurance", "General Health Information", "Alternative Medicine", "Medical Research", "Health Care Providers",  "Mental Health", and "Evaluating Health Information On the Internet".

United Way Line 
(For all 50 States, DC & Puerto Rico)
Choose your state, select your city, and look up help agencies galore!!! Their stellar search engine can lead you to any social service topic you can think of.  Just type in the words "Medicare" or "Medicaid"  To limit your topic, add an additional search term.

Where Else To Go For Help (Consumer-SOS)  


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Social Security

The Social Security Handbook
This Handbook is intended for the use of people who want an explanation of the various Social Security programs, so that they may understand how the programs operate, who is entitled to benefits, and how these benefits may be obtained.

Social Security Disability Secrets
Advice, FAQS and in depth answers from a former Social Security Claims Examiner. Learn how to apply, how to prepare your case and more.

SS Request For Earnings & Benefits Estimate (PDF)

Social Security: What Every Woman Should Know

Social Security & Medicare/Medicaid (Nolo)

United Way Help Line 
(For all 50 States, DC & Puerto Rico)
Choose your state, select your city, and look up help agencies galore!!! Their stellar search engine can lead you to any social service topic you can think of.  Just type in the words "Social Security".

Healthlinkplus.org
Index of health topics grouped by subject.  Links are arranged under "Health Insurance", "General Health Information", "Alternative Medicine", "Medical Research", "Health Care Providers",  "Mental Health", and "Evaluating Health Information On the Internet".


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Insurance Regulations

Regulators Governing Health & Ins. Plans (All 50 States & DC)
For Both Managed Care Plans and Fee For Service Plans.

Know Your COBRA Rights (With Links To All 50 States & DC) 
Their drop box links you to your regional or district office of the Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration of the U.S. Department of Labor, which oversees COBRA.

Health Ins. Portability & Accountability Act of 1996 (Fed Law)

Your Rights Under The Family Medical Leave Act

Consumer And Government Advocates
Many of these groups protect the consumer against unethical insurance companies. May also furnish you with regulations if you ask.

Where Else To Go For Help (Consumer-SOS)

Related Topics
Insurance
The Work Place

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Complaints

Ins. Co. Emergency Claim Numbers

Managed Care (Consumer-SOS)
Choosing a health plan, getting them to treat you right, and where to complain and get help. 

The Medicare Rights Center (Advocacy Group With National Help Line)
Call their national helpline, to consult with knowledgeable counselors about a wide range of Medicare-related issues, including how to reduce premium and prescription drug costs and how to appeal a denial by an HMO or Part D plan.  Or use this national, nonprofit consumer service organization as an advocate to lobby your cause or get the ear of your law maker. 

State Insurance Regulators (All 50 States & DC)

Insurance Complaints (All 50 States & DC)
Also has good info on resolving disputes.

Medical Bills (Consumer-SOS)
Cutting your costs by negotiating with insurance companies.

Fighting Insurance Companies When They Deny Your Claim How to protect yourself, establish contacts, gather allies and write your appeals and grievance letters.

Consumer And Government Advocates
Many of these groups protect the consumer against unethical insurance companies. May also furnish you with regulations if you ask.

Find Your Local Newspaper, Magazine, Radio & TV Stations
Give them a little bad press and you're bargaining power increases tremendously. Select Texas, and then click on your county or city for the proper media to report to. (DC Not Included).

Where Else To Go For Help (Consumer-SOS)


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Where Else To Go For Help

Medical Bills (Consumer-SOS)
Cutting your costs, negotiating with insurance companies.

Low Cost Help For The Uninsured (50 States & DC)
This Is The United Way Helpline
Choose your state, select your city, and look up help agencies galore. Their stellar search engine can lead you to any social service topic you can think of. Just type in words related to your search such as ""uninsured" and "medical" or "uninsured" and "clinic."

The Medicare Rights Center (Advocacy Group With National Help Line)
Call their national helpline, to consult with knowledgeable counselors about a wide range of Medicare-related issues, including how to reduce premium and prescription drug costs and how to appeal a denial by an HMO or Part D plan.  Or use this national, nonprofit consumer service organization as an advocate to lobby your cause or get the ear of your law maker. 

Cleaning For A Reason: Free House Cleaning For Women With Cancer (50 States, DC & Canada)
If you are a woman with cancer and at least 18 years old, their affiliate maid services will provide you with a free cleaning once a month for up to 4 months. After your application is complete and your doctor verification is received, they'll contact the maid service partner in your area. For more information see How To Register.

http://www.consumer-action.org  
Check out their website for information on health care, privacy issues, insurance matters, pricing surveys on banking credit and other hot topics.  Consumer Action is also a lobbyist group.  Their representatives in California and Washington DC promote laws with consumer interests at heart.

The Joint Commission On Accreditation Of Heath Care Organizations/Office Of Quality Monitoring(630) 792-5642
This trade organization consists of over 5,000 hospitals and 10,000 health care providers.  All members must be accredited and comply with the Joint Commission's standards for excellence.  Call them to complain about the cleanliness or quality of care given by members belonging to their organization. 

Low Cost Medicines
One-stop link to thousands of low cost medicines offered through hundreds of patient assistance programs sponsored by member companies, non-member companies and government and local organizations.

Benefits Checkup
Find programs for people ages 55 and over that may pay for some of their costs of prescription drugs, health care, utilities, and other essential items or services. Please fill out their simple questionnaire to find programs that can assist you or your loved ones.

The Medical Information Bureau (617) 426-3660
For a charge of $8.00 they will tell you if your medical record is kept on file.  Give them a call if you have been denied insurance coverage and think such was based on an error in your insurance records.

Department of Medical Assistance/Managed Care Division   (800) 533-0686
Call to report Medicaid fraud.          

The National Committee For Quality Assurance
 (800) 839-6487  or  (888) 275-7585
This agency will tell you if your health plan meets their accreditation standards.

The Medicare Hotline (800) 772-1213  
Call if you're a Medicare or Medicaid recipient unhappy with your treatment.  Don't hang up if you hear a recording about social security. The automated system will eventually offer Medicare options. 

For More Help contact your local TV and radio stations.  Large companies hate bad publicity.  And the last thing your insurer/HMO wants is to be on TV for not paying your claim. Get consumer help from Call For Action and ask that someone call the insurer on your behalf. 

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INSURANCE RESOURCES  

http://www.insure.com/health/

Provides well written, authoritative advice on health insurance, disability insurance, dental insurance, etc. You can also link to insurance companies, quote services and agents, but the selling is done off the insure.com site.

www.quotesmith.com  
This site excels at comparing prices and terms from many firms. Their checklists help determine if health factors bar you from a specific life policy.

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Mental Health

American Psychiatric Association

Mental Health Net

National Help Orgs For A Variety Of Consumer Problems
The Elderly, Environment, Families, Fraud, Health & Safety, Insurance The Handicapped, Medical Problems, Telemarketing and more.

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Insurance and Benefits