The Most Recently Released Reports About Education

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The study found an overall decrease in catastrophic expenses by 2017 — in particular people on Medicaid saw a decrease — but not among the privately insured. Dr. Charles Liu , one of the study authors, called the results speaking of "surprising." Despite gains in health insurance, he said, many Americans may still be vulnerable to unmanageable bills, including high premiums and high out-of-pocket costs. He worries, as a physician, that these costs could discourage people from seeking health care. "I think this is going to create a new kind of culture of, 'I don't go to the doctor because I don't know what it's going to cost or I'm afraid it'll break the bank,' " he said. Liu cited two reasons he thinks people with private insurance aren't seeing better financial protection from huge expenses: high-deductible plans and unavoidable trips to out-of-network facilities such as emergency rooms. These situations can leave patients on the hook for high bills. "A lot of [employer] insurers are offering their employees high-deductible plans because health care is so expensive, and that's the way companies are able to stay afloat," Liu said. "Even if you reach your out-of-pocket max and you don't owe any more than that, that number alone may still represent more than 40% of your take-home income." The authors noted that while earlier research had shown benefits of the ACA in helping the lowest income and uninsured groups get health coverage, little was known about its impact on higher earners or people who had private insurance through employers or the individual marketplace.

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2020/11/12/934146128/despite-aca-coverage-gains-millions-still-suffer-catastrophic-health-care-costs

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