A new report shows medical debt has become a significant part of credit card debt for insured and uninsured patients alike. That trend may grow as more employers switch to high-deductible, smaller-benefit health plans.
These new plans help companies control their rising benefits costs, but they're hard on lower-income and middle-income families who can't afford all the higher out-of-pocket costs that come with them – increasing the likelihood that they'll add medical bills to their growing credit card debts, according to the Access Project and Demos, two public policy organizations.
"The other thing we found was that being insured really didn't protect you from being medically indebted," said Mark Rukavina, director of the Access Project.
Until we create a national health care system, this problem is only going to get worse.