Janiva Answers: Opt-Out for Christian Scientists?

Janiva Toler

Janiva Toler
Executive Director
Answers Your Questions on Healthcare

Question: Is there an opt-out for Christian Scientists under the federal healthcare reform legislation such as they have in Massachusetts?

Answer: Under the Massachusetts insurance mandate Christian Scientists are allowed to opt out on the basis of their sincerely held religious beliefs. At present there is no such provision in the federal health care reform legislation that takes effect in 2014.

While Christian Scientists are not exempt on religious grounds it appears that those who meet certain criteria will not be required to purchase health insurance or pay a penalty for not doing so.

  • Individuals aged 65 and over enrolled in Medicare Part A
  • Medicaid recipients
  • Members of the Armed Forces and their dependents
  • Military retirees

An excellent source for information on this topic is the website christianscience.com and their Federal Health Care FAQs.

3 Responses to Janiva Answers: Opt-Out for Christian Scientists?

  1. Vera Eberhardt says:

    Is the Mother Church working with legislators to add such an opt out provision for those who do not meet the above criteria?

  2. George Reed says:

    A detailed answer to your question is found in Janiva’s download link: “Federal Health Care FAQ” and is explained a bit in this TMC blog: http://christianscience.com/media-inquiries/2010/06/christian-science-and-federal-health-care-reform/

    Another TMC blog states that the Federal office is seeking both spiritual care coverage and accommodation/exemption: http://christianscience.com/media-inquiries/2010/07/where-is-christian-science-care-currently-covered-in-public-and-private-insurance/

  3. Merelice says:

    Or, alternatively, could a provision be added for insurance that covers Christian Science care?

    See my YouTube video by going to YouTube and searching “Christian Science.” It’s entitled, “Healthy, thanks to Christian Science.”

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