Many Americans fear the cost of a diagnosis more than the diagnosis itself.
Deferred or declined recommended medical care for financial reasons? Canadians would not even comprehend the question. My immediate family members have had numerous and serious medical issues that required ambulance rides, emergency surgeries, ICU stays, and multiple follow-up visits with an array of healthcare professionals. This is in addition to random visits to family doctors, specialists, and clinics for chronic diseases or minor issues (and a hip replacement). There are no discussions about financial implications.
It's not that I cannot afford to pay the health care costs but that I would rather not spend my money paying unnecessary medical costs. I have health insurance which states I pay $50 for an office visit with a specialist. Hospitals now have the ability to classify office visits under a hospital clinic and now bill an additional hospital clinic fee of $518 per visit of which I have to pay $298 not covered by my insurance. The same with procedures, tests that cost $62 last year are now billed as a hospital clinic and now my cost is $222. I now check with the billing office before every procedure/office visit to determine how it will be billed and if considered as a hospital clinic I will typically cancel the appointment.
My husband currently needs surgery to repair a shoulder injury, but is deferring it due to the expected recovery of 12 weeks, which translates to a substantial loss of income.
Yes. At one end of my personal extreme I broke my ankle (or at least as best as I could tell clinically) but refused to visit any doctor or facility for an x-ray and treated myself with a boot that I had already been charged a huge sum of money for for a pervious fracture
I have told my family and any friends that I do not want an ambulance called under any circumstances - get me to a hospital if you must but by taxi or car. I don't want my family lumbered with crushing medical debt from me.
I buy my drugs overseas to save money - in bulk and at double strength and use a pill cutter to save money
Were I to get cancer I highly doubt I would take treatment given the debilitating nature of medical debt that accompanies this and the thought of leaving my family to lose what little we have to some large healthcare billing corporation
I'll manage any chronic disease I have the misfortune of getting under any and all circumstances - again rather than be a burden to my family leaving them with debt they will struggle to pay
What a sorry commentary on a system that works precisely as designed