Last Year 80 Million Working-Age Adults Skipped Medical Care Because They Couldn’t Afford It

Can’t afford to seek medical care, even if your’e insured? You’re not alone — a new report says around 80 million people, or 43% of  working-age adults skipped out on getting the treatment they needed last year because they simply couldn’t pay for it. Included in those ranks are the insured as well as the uninsured, a sign that health costs are rising for everyone.

CNNMoney cites the Commonwealth Fund’s Biennial Health Insurance Survey which showed increased numbers of people forgoing medical care or services since the last survey. Two years ago 75 million people decided against filling prescriptions, going to the hospital or medical clinic or skipping recommended tests.

While plenty of people who were uninsured or had otherwise inadequate health insurance had the most trouble paying for the high costs of healthcare, 28% of working-age adults with good insurance also went without treatment because of the price.

Those who were covered spent more for deductibles and co-payments, as the share of people with deductibles higher than $1,000  hit 25%, more than triple the amount in 2003.

“Costs of health care have gone up faster than wages,” said David Blumenthal, president of The Commonwealth Fund.

Perhaps the only positive in the survey is the fact that there weren’t as many adults in the 19-25 age range that were uninsured — only 41%, instead of 48% in 2010. It’s likely that in 2014 Obamacare will further increase the amount of people with coverage as well as help with cost protections, notes the study’s lead author.

Have you skipped out on medical treatment, decided against prescriptions or go without a specialist’s opinion because of the cost? If so, did it affect your health or would you skip it again if you can’t afford it? Let us know by sending an email to with the subject line, HEALTH COSTS.

Millions can’t afford to go to the doctor [CNNMoney]

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