THE US MEDICAL DEBT CRISIS
This year has been challenging for so many people and we wanted to spread a little hope this Christmas season!! Last year, about 75 million people had to choose between medical bills and basics like food, heating, or housing and about 60% of all bankruptcies are from medical debt. Their debt has been canceled, as a gift, and they will begin to feel some much-needed hope as well as some financial freedom. Medical debt can strike anyone: the problem cuts across age groups and educational levels. Even worse, individuals will avoid getting much-needed medical care to avoid debt!
FACTS ABOUT MEDICAL DEBT
- 79 million Americans have unpaid medical bills, which creates an adverse impact on debtor patients, physicians, and hospitals (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau).
6 in 10 of both insured and uninsured people say they have difficulty in paying other bills as a result of medical debt. Over a third were unable to pay for food, heat or housing because of medical bills (Kaiser Family Foundation & New York Times).
Nearly two-thirds of U.S. adults under age 65, or 116 million people, had medical bill problems or debt, went without needed care because of cost, were uninsured for a time or were underinsured — insured but had high out-of-pocket medical expenses or deductibles relative to income (Kaiser Family Foundation & New York Times).
Medical debt contributes to more than 60 percent of the bankruptcies in the U.S. Until satisfied, debt lingers on a person’s credit report to negatively impact their ability to buy a home, get a loan or even gain employment. (The American Journal of Medicine.
WHO BENEFITS FROM “RIP MEDICAL DEBT’S” DEBT RELIEF
Individuals who make less than 2 times the federal poverty level
Individuals with financial hardship (5% or more of annual income going to out-of-pocket medical bills)
Individuals who are insolvent (debts greater than assets)
EASTSIDE CHRISTIAN CHURCH’S IMPACT
This Christmas we decided to unleash compassion in a very unique way. Knowing that many of our neighbors were suffering from financial stress due to medical debt, we joined forces with RIP Medical Debt to see how we could impact lives and unleash compassion. What started off as a basic conversation about how we could help, ignited an effort to impact 3735 people out averaging $2100 per person. Through Eastsiders generosity we gave $43,000 which wiped out $7,944,202.90 in medical debt. Simply put, God is good! He heard our prayers and embraced our vision in a major way!
EVEN WITH COVID, WE HAVE FOUND A CREATIVE WAY TO UNLEASH COMPASSION LOCALLY AND GLOBALLY!ME