By Consumers for Quality Care, on April 13. 2022
According to a survey conducted by Healthcare.com, and reported by Fox Business, nearly half of consumers (48 percent) with medical debt said it has harmed their credit score. A similar percentage (46 percent) reported that their debt had been sent to collections, resulting in serious financial consequences for millions of consumers.
This is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the pain consumers feel from medical debt. One in five reported having to skip a rent or mortgage payment to pay a medical bill. Many patients reported they were caught off-guard by surprise medical bills, with 44 percent saying that their health insurance didn’t cover the service they received.
For those whose debt is sent to collections, they may have their wages garnished, assets seized, money taken directly from their bank account, or be forced to declare bankruptcy. Medical debt is now the leading cause of bankruptcy in the U.S.
Consumers in need of care have enough to worry about – they should not have to worry about going into medical debt and ruining their credit. CQC calls on lawmakers and insurers to work together to find solutions to make quality health care more affordable and help patients avoid crushing medical debt.