Health care has been on Congress’s menu lately, from prescription drugs for Medicare recipients to HMO legislation. But regardless of what Congress decides to do, there are four steps that you can take right now to protect yourself from the high costs of health care.
Step one: Become an educated consumer.
Remember that you are not a replaceable machine that can only be repaired by a licensed mechanic. You are a sovereign human being with a natural responsibility for your own health and wellness. Read health publications on the web and the newsstand. Become familiar with what causes your medical condition, what kinds of treatments doctors and other health practitioners use, and how they work.
Step two: Take charge of your health.
Vitamins, herbs, amino acids, and other forms of complementary medicine are mercifully free from regulation. In many cases, these natural products will do the job of their pharmaceutical counterparts with fewer side effects and at a significantly lower cost. Many of these products have been in use in Europe for years, and only now are being recognized in the United States. Look for published research on supplements that have been used for many years and ask a reputable health practitioner for advice.
Step three: Use the Internet.
If there are no natural products suitable for your condition, consider using a web pharmacy for your prescription drugs. Due to lower transaction costs, drugs are often cheaper over the Internet. You may also be able to help yourself avoid the cost of an office visit by using a prescribing web pharmacist.
Step four: Listen to your Grandma.
Many medical conditions can be avoided by lifestyle changes. Most of this advice can be summed up in the words of your grandmother: Take care of yourself. Don’t eat too much. Exercise. Get fresh air. Don’t work too hard. Love your family. Enough said.