Report: For many, having health insurance is not enough

Boston Statehouse

FILE – In this Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018 file photo, a doctor, center, directs a special camera to look at a patient’s tumor at a hospital in Philadelphia. According to research released on Wednesday, May 13, 2020, cancer deaths have dropped more in states that expanded Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act than in states that did not. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

BOSTON (SHNS) – While Massachusetts ranks high among the states in terms of residents with health insurance, one in four insured residents here reported forgoing health care that they felt was needed due to cost, according to a new state report.

The Center for Health Information and Analysis also said that 52 percent of insured residents with an unmet need due to cost considerations reported that the care they required was not covered by their health plan. And in a pair of other findings that show many in Massachusetts face crises associated with health care costs, CHIA found that nearly one in 10 insured residents with family medical debt owed $8,000 or more, and that 81 percent of insured residents with family medical debt attributed the debt to deductibles, copays and/or coinsurance paid under their health plan.

Details: “Burden of Medical Debt is a Struggle for Some” | “Unmet Health Care Needs Due to Cost are Still Common among the Insured.” 

The findings were included in the final installments, released Thursday morning, of “An Inside Look: Affordability Findings from the Massachusetts Health Insurance Survey,” a biennial population-based survey. “This series provides an important examination of the challenges many Massachusetts residents encounter in paying for medical care despite near universal health insurance coverage,” said Ray Campbell, Executive Director of the Center for Health Information and Analysis. “Utilizing the depth of information collected in the MHIS, each research note offers a unique analysis of a health care affordability issue and its impact on individuals and families across the Commonwealth.”

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