Since MDHIP is a public nonprofit, IRS requires that 1/3 of our donations be of smaller size from the general public. We estimate that donations of $3,000 or less will qualify as public donations. We have an enthusiastic supporter who has offered to match public donations 100% in order to incentivize the public to donate to our program. He is offering a 100% match of donations up to $3,000 until MDHIP has received $400,000 in donations from the public.
The reason that your donations can purchase from 8 to 80 times their value in health insurance is primarily due to the fact that the low income population, whom MDHIP assists, receive large government subsidies (discounts) and cost sharing when they purchase "Silver" health insurance plans. The discounts get larger the lower the income and the older the enrollee.
EXAMPLE 1 - a couple, both age 45, have a combined income of $24,000 per year. Due to government subsidies, this couple has a Humana "Silver" health insurance plan available to them for $708 per year that would normally retail for approximately $7,000. So your $354 donation, which becomes $708 with our supporter's match, can purchase a $7,000 health plan - worth almost 20 times your donation.
EXAMPLE 2 (younger and less poor) - a couple, both age 38, have a combined income of $28,000 per year. They have a Blue Cross "Silver" plan available to them for $1,400 per year. This plan retails for around $7,200. In this case a donation of $700 plus the match can purchase a health plan worth more than 10 times your donation.
EXAMPLE 3 (older and poorer) - a couple, both age 63, have a combined income of $23,000. Humana offers a "Silver" health insurance plan for under $350 for this couple that would retail for around $14,000 because health insurance is very expensive for older people. So in this case, a $175 donation, which becomes $350 with the match, can purchase a health plan for this couple worth 80 times the amount of your donation.
The group that runs MDHIP, as well as the MDHIP administrator , are volunteers receiving no financial compensation for their work with the program. All meetings and work take place in volunteer's homes. Our administrator pays for what little overhead there is, so 100% of all donor money and matching contributions go toward the purchase of health insurance and assistance with copays and deductibles for our low income participants.
The "Silver" health insurance plans not only come with low deductible and low max-out-of-pocket provisions, making them usable for the low income population, but they come with many free preventive screenings such as mammograms, colonoscopies (for those over 50), diabetes screenings, blood pressure checks, cholesterol tests, vaccines, cervical cancer screenings, HIV screenings and more. Thus, medical problems can be discovered early and treated before they reach the point of becoming dangerous or fatal. According to Public Citizen, 45,000 Americans die each year from lack of health insurance whole untold numbers are suffering.
Also, there are those walking around with conditions that are life threatening yet are going untreated due to the inability to afford the treatment . These people will now be able to get treatment. And lastly, there are those living in pain that is treatable but who can't afford the treatment. With insurance, they will be now be able to have the surgery they need, or get the appropriate medications necessary to preserve a healthy life.