The Underinsured and Their Struggles with Medical Debt

Recently, The Commonwealth Fund released a report that states that over 31 million people with health coverage in the United States were underinsured in 2014. To be considered “underinsured,” you have to have had health insurance for at least a full year, but have high deductibles or out of pocket expenses relative to income.

The report states that many of these underinsured people faced financial struggles when faced with medical bills and debt, which ultimately led to financial consequences, including lower credit ratings, the use of their savings, credit card debt, and even bankruptcy.

In light of this information, patient education has never been more important. As patients leave the medical facility, it’s vital that they understand their self-pay obligations—for both the medical facility and the patient’s financial well-being. As patient satisfaction becomes more important in every aspect of medical treatment, from the waiting room to accounts receivable, keeping the patient informed can alleviate headaches further down the road.

You can read more about the report from The Commonwealth Fund here.


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