There is still so much broken within the healthcare system in the United States that a complete set of encyclopedias could be written on the subject. However, when it comes to personal finance, most people don’t know that medical debt is the leading cause of bankruptcy year after year. In fact, the Kaiser Family Foundation has gone on record saying that at least 25% of all adults continually struggle to keep up with medical bills, whether they have insurance coverage or not. Let’s take a brief look at medical debt and ways to find affordable options.

    When Affordable Care Isn’t Affordable

    While many have been led to believe that the Affordable Health Act was repealed last year, that isn’t quite accurate. The individual mandate was taken off the bill but that isn’t in effect yet and some people could still be penalized if not insured. Also, the cost of health insurance is often higher than it was prior to the ACA and in an effort to alleviate some of the financial burden, many Americans have chosen higher deductibles to bring premiums lower. Unfortunately, when a major medical issue arises, that high deductible along with co-pays could put the average taxpayer in debt way over their heads. So when is affordable healthcare unaffordable? The answer is short; almost always.

    Other Ways to Reduce the Cost of Health Insurance

    While you may not want to carry the health insurance offered by your employer, most often that is one of the cheapest routes because it is a group policy with built-in group discount prices. Even so, there are online providers such as Health Insurance Innovations that are also a group of sorts and with a target group of millions of Americans, they can sometimes offer group rates much better than even the largest employers in the U.S. It is well known by this point in time that any business operating online has lower overheads, so their pricing structures can pass that savings onto consumers. Added to the group discount rates, that could tally up to a nice little saving.

    Health Insurance vs. No Coverage

    Even in the event that the health insurance mandate is completely repealed, what would that mean to the average blue collar worker? It would boil down to the conflict between having coverage or being left with no way to afford the costs which keep getting higher. While health insurance is, indeed, expensive, what would happen to your family if you were suddenly in need of bypass surgery or were diagnosed with cancer requiring chemotherapy and radiation? Those costs can be astronomical and would quickly lead to major debt beyond your ability to pay.

    The dilemma is always going to be making a choice between going without health insurance or paying high premiums. Fortunately, there are ways to find lower insurance rates if you are willing to do a bit of research. There are a myriad of options available and major medical may be one coverage to consider. However, with so many low cost options like Health Insurance Innovations available, it is better to be prepared than be in a position to be forced into bankruptcy. Still, the decision is yours. What would you choose?