By Consumers for Quality Care, on December 6, 2023
Casey McIntyre, a 38-year-old suffering from ovarian cancer, died last month. But before she did, she organized a campaign to raise money to help others pay down their medical debts. Just one week after her death, the campaign had raised almost $220,000, according to The New York Times.
“Me and Casey’s family are stunned,” Andrew Gregory, Casey’s husband, said of how much had been raised to date. “We’re overwhelmed, and it’s been really powerful to see the response to people wanting to eliminate strangers’ medical debt.”
Medical debt is a crisis that touches roughly 23 million Americans. For many, medical debt increases stress and wreaks havoc on credit scores. It is also known to cause consumers to delay necessary medical care, and often forces consumers to file for bankruptcy.
McIntyre chose to work with RIP Medical Debt, a leading nonprofit medical debt forgiveness firm, which works with local hospitals to identify eligible low-income patients, purchase their debt for pennies on the dollar, and finally notify patients that their debts have been forgiven. To date, RIP Medical Debt has helped wipe away over $10 billion in medical debt for consumers
According to RIP Medical Debt’s Vice President of Communications, Daniel Lempert, the funds raised from McIntyre’s campaign will “probably abolish somewhere in the neighborhood of $19 million” of debt.
Casey’s lasting and unselfish legacy is to be commended. Her dying wish will help many get out from under from crushing burden of medical debt. CQC applauds efforts to lessen the harms of medical debt for consumers, and also urges lawmakers and the Biden administration to enact policies that will protect consumers from medical debt.