Medical issues are some of the leading reasons people file for personal bankruptcy. For many people, health problems are unavoidable, but you can protect yourself from financial issues that could result from it. Here are the things you can do.
Data from the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) show that more than a quarter of adults in the United States struggle to pay their medical bills. Often adults suffer from financial problems because they lack medical insurance, and end up in medical debt and bankruptcy. Medical debt is also the top source of personal bankruptcy filings in the United States.
While it may be tempting to file for bankruptcy to take care of the medical bills, this is not always a good idea because this could taint your credit score for years. Your best bet is to protect yourself from the financial hardships caused by medical issues and discuss it with providers selling Medicare supplement insurance. Here’s how you could prevent financial debt when you go through medical problems.
Examine Your Health Insurance
One way to protect yourself is to take a closer look at your health insurance plan. You should check what kinds of illnesses and diseases are covered, and whether they cover pre-conditions.
Many of those who filed for personal bankruptcy due to health problems had medical insurance at the beginning of their illness, but the coverage may not be enough to cover their treatments, medication, or even their surgeries.
You can check whether Medicare offers supplement insurance that pays for a higher premium and offers comprehensive coverage. In some cases, you could consider a more expensive plan that offers better benefits and lower deductibles and co-payments.
Make Sure You Have Enough Savings
Many people wind up in debt over health issues because they do not have enough saved up to cover unexpected medical costs. Even those with medical insurance are still vulnerable to financial difficulties when they do not have enough savings for the daily costs of an injury or illness.
You can set aside a set amount every month to put in a savings account, but you could also compare interest rates between banks. Consider taking a checking account because it could help you manage your expenses better. You could also limit the use of your credit cards, and only use them when they are essential.
See Your Doctor Regularly
Taking care of your health by eating healthy and exercising regularly is not enough. You should see your doctor and have a medical checkup every year. These will not prevent illness, but you can prevent any disease from worsening and avoid costly and long-term treatments.
Detecting disease in the early stages is crucial because this is when they are easiest and least expensive to treat. The longer you wait before addressing a medical problem, the greater will be the odds of having to spend more on medical treatments and medication.
Spending for medical treatment may be inevitable but you can buffer yourself from the hardships that come after it. You can do this by taking care of your health, saving regularly, and making sure that your health insurance offers the appropriate coverage.