Privately Insured Individuals Are Still at Risk of Medical Debt, Financial Concerns

People with private health insurance are just about as likely to have medical debt as the U.S. population as a whole, according to a study published on Sept. 16 in JAMA Network Open. Lead study author David U. Himmelstein, M.D., tells AIS Health, a division of MMIT, that the results suggest that health insurers could do more to protect enrollees from financial hardship.

The authors examined more than 135,000 people who completed the U.S. Census Bureau’s Surveys of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) from 2017 to 2019. During that time, 10.8% of individuals carried medical debt, including 10.5% of privately insured and 15.3% of uninsured people.

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