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KFF’s Kaiser Health News and NPR Launch Diagnosis: Debt, a Yearlong Reporting Partnership Exploring the Scale, Impact, and Causes of the Health Care Debt Crisis in America

KFF’s Kaiser Health News (KHN) and NPR today launched a yearlong investigative project that explores the scale, impact, and causes of the health care debt crisis in the United States. Drawing upon a special KFF poll conducted for the project, original data analysis, and hundreds of interviews, the investigation reveals…

Health Care Debt In The U.S.: The Broad Consequences Of Medical And Dental Bills

The KFF Health Care Debt Survey finds that four in ten adults have some form of health care debt, with most citing one-time or short-term medical expenses as the contributor. Many of those with health care debt report making personal sacrifices and enduring financial consequences as a result of their debt, while nearly one in five think they will never be able to pay off.

Overall inflation has not yet flowed through to the health sector

Prices for medical services typically rise more quickly than the broader economy, but the reverse has been true recently as general inflation rose rapidly. The recent trend reflects the unusually high inflation affecting other parts of the economy, which could bleed over to affect health care costs at some point.

Data Note: 2022 Medical Loss Ratio Rebates

We find that insurers estimate they will issue a total of about $1 billion in Medical Loss Ratio (MLR) rebates this year across all commercial markets under a provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that limits the share of premiums that insurers can keep for administration, marketing, and profits.

For ACA Enrollees, How Much Premiums Rise Next Year is Mostly up to Congress

Most customers with coverage through Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces will face big premium increases next year if Congress doesn’t extend the temporary enhanced tax credits included in the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021. If the outcome isn’t clear by summer, fall open enrollment could be a mess.

New Interactive Provides Essential Facts and Trends Related to Medicare Spending

A new KFF interactive provides essential facts and trends about spending on Medicare, the federal health insurance program that covers 65 million seniors and people with disabilities, or nearly 1 in 5 Americans. In 2020, Medicare spending accounted for 12 percent of the federal budget and 20 percent of national…

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.