NEW YORK, Sept. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Twenty Five percent of Americans say they currently have more medical debt than emergency savings, according to a new Bankrate.com (NYSE: RATE) report. This number nearly doubles (44%) among those earning less than $30,000 per year.
Furthermore, people who do not currently have medical debt are concerned about it. Over half of Americans (55%) are worried they will find themselves overwhelmed by medical debt (27% are very worried and 28% are somewhat worried). "These results show that more than half the population feels financially insecure when it comes to health care. This is an issue that affects consumer confidence and the broader economy," according to Bankrate.com insurance analyst Doug Whiteman.
Adding to the negative sentiment, the majority of Americans (55%) are worried that they will not have affordable health insurance in the future (versus 43% who were either not too worried or not worried at all). "This might suggest that many people are either uninformed about the exchanges or lacking confidence in the Affordable Care Act," added Mr. Whiteman.
The report found that worry levels were the highest among people in their prime earning years, between the ages of 30 and 64.
These results comprise Bankrate.com's Health Insurance Pulse, a monthly survey that tracks how Americans are feeling about health care and their personal finances. The survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International (PSRAI) and can be seen in its entirety here:
PSRAI obtained telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1,006 adults living in the continental United States. Telephone interviews were conducted by landline (505) and cell phone (501, including 279 without a landline phone). Interviews were done in English and Spanish by Princeton Data Source from August 21 to 24, 2014. Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is ± 3.6 percentage points.
About Bankrate, Inc. Bankrate is a leading publisher, aggregator, and distributor of personal finance content on the Internet. Bankrate provides consumers with proprietary, fully researched, comprehensive, independent and objective personal finance editorial content across multiple vertical categories including mortgages, deposits, insurance, credit cards, and other categories, such as retirement, automobile loans, and taxes. The Bankrate network includes Bankrate.com, CreditCards.com and InsuranceQuotes.com, our flagship websites, and other owned and operated personal finance websites, including Caring.com, Interest.com, Bankaholic.com, Mortgage-calc.com, CreditCardGuide.com, Nationwide Card Services, CarInsuranceQuotes.com, InsureMe, CreditCards.ca, and NetQuote.com. Bankrate aggregates rate information from over 4,800 institutions on more than 300 financial products. With coverage of nearly 600 local markets in all 50 U.S. states, Bankrate generates over 172,000 distinct rate tables capturing on average over three million pieces of information daily. Bankrate develops and provides web services to over 80 co-branded websites with online partners, including some of the most trusted and frequently visited personal finance sites on the Internet such as Yahoo!, AOL, CNBC, and Bloomberg. In addition, Bankrate licenses editorial content to over 500 newspapers on a daily basis including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and The Boston Globe.
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