BUSINESS: Research + Stats Americans Are Skipping Medical Treatment Due to Inflation By Staff Thursday, September 29, 2022 11:00 AM Inflation has left many Americans scrambling to pay medical bills. According to a recent Debt.com poll, 57 percent of respondents agreed that inflation was making it harder to pay medical bills. Presently 6 in 10 Americans are struggling to pay health care costs. As many as 28 percent have said they are avoiding medical care due to debts already owed, however, this has not slowed medical providers from trying to collect on debts. More than 25 percent of respondents said their medical bills had been sent to a collections agency and 28 percent said they have avoided additional care because of this. The report found that respondents owe less than previous years but are finding it more difficult to make payments. "We tend to think of inflation as annoying instead of dangerous," Debt.com president Don Silvestri said. "But inflation means more than higher food and gas prices. It pervades everything we spend money on—including our physical health." In 2021, 80 percent of respondents said they owed more than $500 in medical debt, in 2021, this number shrank to 40 percent. The report also found that lenders are less willing to negotiate or adjust the cost of bills. Three in 10 respondents said they had tried to negotiate the amount owed to no avail. Silvestri recommends that Americans find alternative ways to save money rather than cutting back on health care. "Your health is a priority not just for you, but for your family. If you don't see a way to pay for your health care, then get another set of eyes on the problem,” he said.