The 1099 Life: Health Insurance

There are some basic tools a 1099 MD needs to survive in the world.

Contracting expertise, tax efficiency/accounting expertise, and benefits management expertise.   Today I write about the latter, and specifically, healthcare.

As a 1099MD you’re on your own to find yourself quality health insurance.  Since you cannot take advantage of health system employee group insurance, you’ll have to buy your own.

You can’t wait to go to the Obamaexchange and find yourself a cheap plan, you exclaim with excitement ‘look how low the prices are!’   But upon further inspection the reality sets in: you’re getting swiss cheese for the price of camembert!   Not only will your plan (HSA or otherwise) be expensive but the even more concerning part is WHERE will you be able to use your health insurance?   Remember, health insurance isn’t health care!

For example, in the Houston marketplace, not a single plan in the exchange was contracted with any of the well known established systems (MDAH, MHermann, Methodist, etc).   You’re going to Ben Taub!  And as to the answer of ‘why’ in healthcare it is of course the same 5 letter answer as always: MONEY.

So what is a despairing 1099MD to do?  Good news  – if you have a family member or spouse that you can work with.   Here’s the solution:  employ your spouse or family member for a minimum of 30 hours per week at minimum wage.  Not only will it reduce your corporate income, but it will allow you to add a second person to your insurance group.    Boom!  You can shop for group health insurance.    And look at that, all the hospitals you’d want to be a part of are now available, not to mention a great deal better pricing and flexibility with the plans you are evaluating.   Find a competent agent to assist you in the hunt for group health insurance and you’ll be on your way.

Got questions? Ask away. is your resource for quality guidance on surviving as a 1099MD.