fbpx Medical Debt in the US, 2009-2020 - Raymond Kluender | Harvard Kennedy School

Additional Authors:

  • Raymond Kluender

Excerpt

July 20, 2021, Paper: "Question  What is the total amount and distribution of medical debt in collections in the US? Findings  In this retrospective analysis of credit reports for a nationally representative 10% panel of individuals, an estimated 17.8% of individuals in the US had medical debt in collections in June 2020 (reflecting care provided prior to the COVID-19 pandemic). Medical debt was highest among individuals who lived in the South and in zip codes in the lowest income deciles and became more concentrated in lower-income communities in states that did not expand Medicaid.  Meaning  This study provides an estimate of the amount of medical debt in collections in the US based on consumer credit reports from January 2009 to June 2020, reflecting care delivered prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, and suggests that the amount of medical debt was highest among individuals living in the South and in lower-income communities, although further study is needed regarding debt related to COVID-19."

Non-HKS Author Website - Raymond Kluender