Millennials Are In The Crosshairs When It Comes To Accruing Medical Debt
Young people who have less earning power and can lack insurance through their jobs are often saddled with daunting medical bills -- more so than older generations. But there are steps to take to help alleviate that stress.
Medical Bills Plague Millennials; These Tips May Be The Cure
Chrystal McKay knew enough about medical care costs that she skipped the ambulance ride after a car accident. A friend drove her to the emergency room. That saved her one bill, but she faces another for more than $20,000 after her ER visit. The 29-year-old Stockton, California, woman must balance paying her debt with getting care for a sprained shoulder that may need surgery: "I have to weigh the pros and cons. I'm already $20,000 in debt, and any more treatment will just put me more in debt." (Pyles, 12/20)
And a look back at KHN and NPR's series that put faces to those astronomical health care bills —
Kaiser Health News:
Year One Of KHN’s ‘Bill Of The Month’: A Kaleidoscope Of Financial Challenges
In 2018, KHN and NPR launched “Bill of the Month,” a crowdsourced investigation in which we dissect, investigate and explain medical bills you send us. In telling the story behind one patient’s bill each month, our goal is to understand the genesis of the often exorbitant and baffling charges that pervade the American medical system. But also, we aim to offer ideas for patients and policymakers about how they might redress common patient situations that are frustrating and downright unaffordable. So far, we’ve examined bills for conditions as minor as toenail fungus (a $1,500-per-month topical medicine) and as major as a “widow-maker” heart attack ($109,000 after insurance). We’ve looked at bills for simple exams ($18,000 for a urine test) and ambulance rides ($57,000 for an air ambulance). Many of the bills miraculously get resolved once our reports come out. (12/21)