The aim of health insurance is to shield consumers from the high cost of medical services, but one in five working-age Americans with health insurance has trouble paying their medical bills, according to a new surveyby the Kaiser Family Foundation and The New York Times.
To pay down those bills, more than 60 percent of those having trouble paying their medical bills have used up most or all of their savings, and more than 40 percent got another job or added hours to earn more money. More than three-quarters have delayed a vacation or major household purchase, and near 40 percent have increased their credit card debt.
Even with insurance, typically obtained through an employer, three quarters of those with problem medical bills say that the total cost of insurance copays, deductibles or coinsurance was more than they could afford. Those with high-deductible plans, which have become more popular among employers providing coverage, were more likely to have medical bill problems.
– The Fiscal Times