1 in 4 individual insured couldn’t afford actual medical care in 2014

1 in 4 individual insured couldn’t afford actual medical care in 2014

One in four people who bought health insurance on their own couldn’t afford medical care last year, according to a study released Thursday that shows out-of-pockets costs are still getting between Americans and their doctors despite Obamacare’s progress in cutting the ranks of the uninsured.

Families USA studied people who purchased insurance in the non-group market — they weren’t covered through their jobs or a public program — in 2014, the first full year for which Obamacare’s marketplace was fully operational, and found 25.2 percent struggled to get care or pay for needed drugs.

Some of those studied entered Obamacare’s health exchanges, while others sought out coverage in the off-exchange market.

Lower and middle-income people were hit especially hard by high deductibles — the amount that must be paid before insurers will pay a claim — and other expenses that come straight from their wallets.

Among those who passed up care, 15 percent went without tests or followups, 14 percent passed on prescription drugs and 12 percent gave up medical care. …

Among those with lower to middle-incomes — $16,200 to $29,199 as an individual, or from $27,400 to $49,499 for a family of three — more than a third reported going without care because it was too expensive.

About two of every five people with middle-to-higher incomes — $29,200 to $46,699 for an individual, or $49,500 to $79,199 for family of three — went without care.

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