Many people in the United States suffer from overwhelming medical expenses, stemming from an unexpected injury, medical diagnosis or other ailment. According to a CNBC report, medical debt is the number one cause of bankruptcy in the United States. Approximately 2 million people every year suffer from the effects of medical expenses, and another 643,000 people file for bankruptcy as a result of medical debt.
Medical conditions and injuries can affect people in a number of ways. People who are sick may be forced to miss work until they can recover from their injuries. In some cases, people may go unpaid while they are out of work due to illness. Furthermore, people may be charged different medical expenses depending on where they live and which medical institute they go to. A study conducted by the National Institutes of Health found that emergency room costs across the United States vary significantly depending on where they are located. For example, ER charges for a sprain ranged from $20 to $20,000 depending on where the patient was treated.
Even when people have insurance coverage, they still may be unable to afford their deductibles, monthly premiums and copays. Those with high deductible plans may have to pay $10,000 out-of-pocket before their insurance even kicks in to help with the payments. Those who wish to purchase a lower deductible plan will be charged increased monthly premiums.
Medical expenses can come when people least expect them, making it hard to plan for emergency situations. Experts suggest putting money away in case an accident or unexpected medical condition should occur.