Women Pay Over $15 Billion More in Out-Of-Pocket Medical Costs

By Consumers for Quality Care, on October 11, 2023

Women Pay Over $15 Billion More in Out-Of-Pocket Medical Costs

A recent study, conducted by Deloitte and reported by Axios, found that women with employer-sponsored coverage paid an estimated $15 billion more annually for their medical care compared to men, despite having similar health insurance.

Although women were found to use health care about 10 percent more than men, their out-of-pocket expenses are disproportionally higher at 18 percent, an average of $266 more per year. Crucially, the disparity would have been even greater, but the study removed maternity care costs from its calculations.

The authors surmise that women are recommended different kinds of care than men, and that certain screenings, like breast cancer imaging, is more expensive than other types of cancer screenings.

To help close the health care cost gender gap, Deloitte recommends that employers increase health care spending to offset these existing disparities, and examine whether certain treatments currently prescribed are actually benefitting consumers and not insurers and providers.

CQC urges lawmakers, health care providers, and insurers to address these inequities in our health care system to level out health care costs for all consumers.