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NHCS discovers difficulties in patients paying their bills

April 11, 2014
Healthcare Consulting By LW Consulting Inc.

A medical billing consultant might be useful in structuring payment systems, and your practice might be in more need than previously thought, based on information from the National Center for Health Statistics (NHCS).

The organization has released results of a survey that contains three years' worth of data. While the findings seem to show an overall decrease in the amount of consumers who are struggling to pay their bills successfully, the process seems to be somewhat gradual and relative for different demographics.

For example, the statement shows that the amount of men who were having payment difficulties and under 65 dropped from 19.6 percent in the second half of 2012 to 19.1 percent in the first half of 2013. It had already shed 0.1 percent six months prior to that.

For women, the change was a little more dramatic: though the number still dropped between 2012 and 2013, it went up by half a percentage during 2012. And more than 34 percent in this category were uninsured as of the first half of 2013.

Another study along similar lines undertaken by NerdHealthWallet found that more than 35 million American are likely to be sought after by collection agencies for their bills, and several million are so burdened by healthcare payments they can't afford basic necessities.

The vice president of the company, Christina LaMontagne, described the way she hopes her company will spread light on the real causes underlying this information.

"While we are quick to blame debt on poor savings and bad spending habits, our study emphasizes the burden of health costs causing widespread indebtedness," she said. "Medical bills can completely overwhelm a family when illness strikes."

These are all reasons why the medical billing process needs to be simple, streamlined and easy to implement, in order to promote health and avoid unnecessary expenses.