NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Cost Transparency Improves Collections and Boosts Satisfaction

July 5, 2017

NCPA Senior Fellow Devon Herrick writes for Managed Healthcare Executive:

One complaint about Obamacare is that deductibles have skyrocketed since its inception. The average deductible has about doubled in the past decade in the employer market, a phenomenon that began long before Obamacare. In 2016, the average deductible for employee-only coverage was $1,478.  The average deductible for marketplace plans in 2017 is $6,105 (bronze) and $3,609 (silver). As a result of higher deductibles, many individuals are essentially having to pay virtually all their medical care bills out of pocket.  

Patients are often shocked when they get hit with out-of-network medical bills or even just an expensive charge they did not expect. A recent survey claimed more than one-third (37%) of Americans could not pay a medical bill of $100 without incurring debt. One-in-five reported being so cash-strapped they could not pay anything toward a medical bill without incurring debt. In the same survey just more than half of Americans indicated they have received medical bills they could not pay.

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