KFF: Americans still cutting corners to avoid rising healthcare costs

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Americans still are forgoing or delaying health care on account of the economy, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, which recently released its May Health Tracking Poll.

One in four Americans reported they have had problems paying medical bills in the past year, and as many as 60% said they have cut corners to avoid healthcare costs.

"The public is most likely to report relying on home remedies or over-the-counter drugs instead of going to see a doctor (38%) and skipping dental care or checkups (35%)," the report read. "Twenty‐nine percent report that because of the cost, they have postponed needed health care; 25% say they have skipped a recommended medical test or treatment; and a similar share (24%) did not fill a prescription for a medicine. Smaller shares report they cut
pills in half or skipped doses of medicine (16%) or had problems getting mental health care (8%) in the past year due to the cost."

And the general consensus is all could get worse before it gets better as healthcare costs continue to rise. Among Americans ages 18 to 64 years with private health insurance, about half (52%) reported that their health insurance premiums have been going up lately, and 28% said this has been a financial burden for them. In terms of deductibles and copayments, about 42% reported that these costs have been rising, and about half of that group said it’s a financial burden, the foundation noted.

When those ages 18 to 64 years with private health insurance are asked which form of healthcare costs personally cause the greatest financial burden, roughly equal shares said health insurance premiums (19%), the plan deductible (18%) and copayments for doctor visits and prescription drugs (16%), according to the report.

To download the report, click here.

Comments

- 11:28 AM
Kathryn Menefee says

The reason that healthcare costs continue going up is the expensive and inefficient U.S. healthcare delivery system. The consequences of the fee-for-service model put an unnecessary financial burden on patients and employers and raise the overall cost of healthcare. Read a recent blog by Bob Fabbio about healthcare spending in the US, http://blog.whiteglove.com/what-does-2-trillion-buy-how-about-our-nation%e2%80%99s-healthcare/

- 7:41 AM
nicolas25 says

I wonder when all these statistics will reach our governments ears, we obviously need some help coping with the rising healthcare costs. These days I'm seriously thinking to pursue a healthcare career, I really want to understand which is the cause for the current healthcare and how could I change this situation.

- 2:06 AM
Dariel Lee says

Sad to hear that people are cutting corners because of rising health care costs that they are unable to pay. Many people go for home remedies or over the counter drugs instead of going to a doctor. The medical fees, expensive medicines etc are making them to do so. The financial burden of health care is increasing and causing people a lot of problems. https://urgentcareguru.com/clinic/2162

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