Credit rating agencies have removed small unpaid medical bills from consumer credit, and some people are seeing their credit scores improve, a new study finds.
The Biden administration unveiled regulations that potentially would help tens of millions of people who have medical debt on their credit reports.
Saddled with debt from health care, many Americans are forced into painful tradeoffs. And some are losing their homes.
The suits pursued patients and their families, sometimes putting liens on homes. "I know my house will never be mine. It is going to be the hospital's," said Donna Lindabury, 70, who lost her case.
More than half of the counties in the nation's so-called Diabetes Belt also have high rates of medical debt among their residents, an NPR analysis found.
Americans paid an estimated $1 billion in interest on medical debt in just three years, a federal agency finds. This includes use of credit cards often pitched in doctors' and dentists' offices.
More than 50 consumer and patient groups want the Biden Administration to aggressively protect Americans from medical bills and debt collectors. The effort follows a KHN/NPR investigation.
Instead of health insurance, the Rev. Jeff King had signed up for an alternative that left members of the plan to share the costs of health care. That meant lower premiums, but a huge hospital bill.
An examination of billing policies and practices at more than 500 hospitals across the country shows widespread reliance on aggressive collection tactics.
What would a world without medical debt look like? In Germany's former coal-mining region medical debt is almost unknown, despite economic challenges and health problems. Here's why.
Some credit cards advertised by hospitals lure in patients with rosy promises of convenient, low-interest payments on big bills. But interest rates soar if you can't quickly pay off the loan.
Black communities in the U.S. suffer disproportionately from health care debt. The reasons go back to segregation and a history of racist policies that have limited Black wealth.
A youth mental health crisis and a shortage of therapists and other care providers who take insurance are pushing many U.S. families into financial ruin. But it's rarely acknowledged as medical debt.
New policies to keep medical bills from sinking credit ratings sound good but will likely fall short for many hit hardest by debt — especially Black Americans in the South, such as Penelope Wingard.
Across the U.S., many hospitals have become wealthy, even as their bills force patients to make gut-wrenching sacrifices. This pattern is especially stark for health care systems in Dallas-Fort Worth.