A Healthier You
A Shocking Number Of Americans Know Someone Who Died Due To Unaffordable Care
(Huffington Post) – In the last five years, 34 million Americans watched as someone they knew died after they couldn’t afford medical treatment, according to a survey report that Gallup and West Health published Tuesday.
That means 13% of Americans personally knew someone who died who didn’t get the medical care they knew they needed because they couldn’t afford it.
Reflecting the deep disparities in the economy and the health care system endured by racial minorities and low-income people, nonwhites and the people who earn the least money were about twice as likely to report knowing someone who died under these circumstances, the survey reveals.
Twenty percent of nonwhite respondents reported knowing someone who died because of unaffordable health care, twice the share of white people. Similarly, 19% of those living in households with incomes below $40,000 annually had this experience, compared with 11% of those earning $40,000 to $100,000 and 9% of those with higher incomes.
Americans older than 65 were the least likely to report knowing someone in this situation, perhaps reflecting Medicare’s universal coverage of retirees. Among adults ages 18 to 44, 17% said they knew someone who died because of high health care costs, more than the 12% of those 45 to 64 and 7% of people older than 65.
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