In a Bankrate survey last year, 32 percent of respondents said that they or a family member had chosen not to seek medical care in 2020 because of the cost. And a mere 6 percent said they think our healthcare system is "fine as-is."
People who have always lived comfortably often have no idea what it's like to weigh the risk of racking up a huge bill vs. the risk of more suffering and possibly even death if you don't seek care. It's a really scary calculation that can feel desperate and even hopeless.
So if you have a story about a time when you skipped or delayed getting care because of the cost, we want to hear from you.
Maybe you were injured your shoulder while playing softball with some pals at the park. At first, you thought you just pulled a muscle, but weeks later the pain hadn't changed. A friend suggested physical therapy, but you knew you couldn't afford ongoing appointments at about $125 each. So you never went, and your shoulder never really stopped hurting either.
Or perhaps you tried to ration your insulin when you were between jobs and didn't have insurance to help cover the cost (up to $300 per vial). But skipping doses caused your blood sugar to spike dangerously high. You landed in the hospital, but you could have died.
Or maybe you hadn't been to the dentist in years and years because your budget was so tight. By the time you finally went in for a cleaning, you had hundreds of dollars worth of cavities that needed to be filled ($200 each, on average) and other issues that would've cost so much less if you'd learned about them sooner.
If you're comfortable, share your story in the comments below or via this anonymous Google form. Stories like these aren't talked about enough, but they really, really need to be heard.