About 63% Of US Residents Paying More For Health Care

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In a nationwide survey released on Wednesday, 63% of U.S. residentsreported paying higher health care costs this year than they did in2006, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports. The survey, released by the Employee Benefit Research Institute, was conduced with market research firm Mathew Greenwald and Associates and included 1,000 adults interviewed between May 17 and June 10.

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Ofthose affected by increasing health care costs, 81% said they werepursuing healthier habits to keep their costs down, an increase of 10percentage points from last year. In addition, 64% of respondentsreported that they now will see a doctor only for more serious concernsto save money, an increase of 10 percentage points from last year. Thenumber of respondents who said they stopped filling or skipped doses ofprescription drugs increased to 28% from 21% in 2006.

Healthcare cost increases also caused 29% of respondents to have difficultiespaying for basic needs, such as food, heating or housing, while 20%said they had increased their credit card debt to pay for health carebills. More than 70% said they think the U.S. health care system needsto be reformed, with 24% calling for a complete overhaul and 47% sayingthey are in favor of major changes (Belser, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 10/24).

Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. Youcan view the entire Kaiser DailyHealth Policy Report, search the archives, and sign up for email deliveryat kaisernetwork.org/email. The Kaiser Daily HealthPolicy Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of The HenryJ. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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