- A new study from the Commonwealth Fund finds that health care costs are unaffordable for many Americans, including those with employee-paid insurance.
- Americans struggled to pay their medical bills, even if they purchased their own insurance, such as on the Affordable Care Act Marketplace.
- That cost prevents many Americans from getting the health care they need.
More than half of working-age adults were struggling to pay their medical bills this year, according to a new report Commonwealth Fund Research.
The Commonwealth Fund, a private foundation that supports medical research, found that uninsured Americans have the hardest time paying their medical bills, but even those with employer-based insurance pay their medical bills. I’m having a hard time.
This year, 43 percent of insured Americans with employee-paid health insurance struggled to pay their medical bills.
Meanwhile, 57% of people who purchased their own insurance through the Affordable Care Act Marketplace or elsewhere said they found it difficult to pay their medical bills this year.
Additionally, 45 percent of Americans with Medicaid health insurance struggle to pay their medical bills, as do 51 of older Americans with Medicare.
“Having health insurance is always better than not having health insurance, but this study shows that health insurance in the U.S. “It challenges the assumption that insurance provides affordable access to health care for all.” Lead author of the study.
And rising medical costs are forcing many Americans to forego receiving medical care.
According to the survey, nearly 40% of working-age adults report not seeking needed medical care or prescription drugs in the past year because they could not afford it.
And research shows that nearly 60% of Americans who skipped or delayed medical care because of cost say their health worsened as a result.
Uninsured Americans are the most likely to procrastinate on their health journeys, with 64% reporting that they missed or postponed purchasing necessary medical care or prescription drugs in the last year.
But this year, 29% of working-age adults with employee-paid health insurance admitted to skipping or delaying needed medical care or prescriptions.
Among Americans with their own insurance, 37% said they had skipped or delayed medical care, as did 39% of those with Medicaid health insurance and 42% of Medicare beneficiaries.
The survey also found that nearly one-third of working-age Americans say they have medical or dental debt due to high medical costs.
Additionally, 39% of people with medical or dental debt said they had to cut back on basic needs like food, utilities and rent because of it.
Collins said the federal government asked Americans whether inflation or other costs of living have made it difficult to pay for health care.
“We found that insurance doesn’t adequately protect many people from budget stress,” she says.
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