There are approximately seven million commercial truck drivers on the roads in the United States. Commercial truck drivers have one of the most dangerous jobs in America, yet many of them either don’t have health insurance or they don’t have a sufficient amount to provide for the needs of their families. Truck drivers spend much more time on the road than most other drivers often being behind the wheel for up to 11 hours per day. Truckers risk not only increased injuries from accidents, but also increased illnesses due to the nature of the trucking business. Illnesses and diseases such as ringing ears, hypertension, low back pain, back injuries, neck pain, heart disease etc. are higher among truckers than the general population. The cost of treating these various conditions can be very expensive.
Major medical health insurance is insurance which protects against the risk of incurring medical expenses especially drastic occurrences. It is a contract which pays for a percentage of medical costs in exchange for the payment of a premium. Insurance companies estimate risks among a targeted group of individuals to determine a basic finance structure to set rates and to allow for the collection of monthly premiums or payroll taxes. This assures that money will be available to pay for the health care benefits specified in the insurance agreement. A central organization such as a government agency or a private company administers the plan to pay for the benefits provided for under the terms of the insurance contract.
All truck drivers should have some type of health insurance, but many do not. Cost is the primary factor which prevents many truck drivers from having health insurance. The cost of insurance can be kept down if the employer provides insurance for its drivers. Most truck drivers that work for major trucking companies are able to get insurance at affordable group rates through the various plans offered by the companies they work for. This is much cheaper than buying individual policies and is probably the most economical way for these drivers to obtain health insurance.
Independent drivers and other drivers that don’t have the option of obtaining group rates for a health insurance policy have other options. One is a high deductible plan which has low monthly premiums but require that a high deductible be paid out of pocket before the insurance policy would pay for anything. This could end up being a very costly option. A low deductible plan will have higher monthly premiums but a lower deductible amount. Another affordable option is a Defined Benefit Plan. These policies pay a pre-determined amount for services such as office visits, lab work, surgeries, critical care, etc. Some of these plans also have prescription plans.
One company which offers many services for commercial truck drivers is The Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association, (OOIDA). For a very nominal fee individuals can become a member of this organization which offers a full range of benefits for its members including insurance. OOIDA offers a complete range of insurance coverage for truck drivers and their families. This includes health insurance, life insurance, disability insurance and dental insurance among others.
Health insurance is a necessity. Don’t risk your health or the health of your family trying to get along without it. Being among the uninsured is not a good situation for you or your loved ones to be in especially if any of you contract a serious illness or are victims of an accident. If a health crisis arises you will be glad that you and your family are covered.
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