As Bob's pointed out (here and here), the idea that significant numbers of folks are going bankrupt from unpaid health care expenses is, to put it nicely, inflated. And today, we have some more "truth to power" as regards the issue.
Professor Todd Zywicki, blogging at The Volokh Conspiracy, recently testified (in front of God, country, and the U S House of Representatives) that "current law adequately accommodates the claims of those debtor laid low by medical problems and expenses and other innocent parties who are affected by bankruptcy including health care professionals and other consumers. Nor is there any evidence that medical bankruptcies are creating any sort of crisis for the bankruptcy system or that the percentage of medical bankruptcies has been rising over time."
He goes on to argue that:
■ There is no evidence that there has been an increase in the frequency or severity of job loss or income interruption as a result of health problems
■ There is little evidence that medical debt is a major causal factor in bankruptcy filings
■ There are no macroeconomic trends in health insurance coverage that would suggest that lack of health insurance could be a major contributing cause to bankruptcy filings
Now, I'm not contending that there are no legitimate examples of folks whose health care expenses have been so great as to imperil their financial solvency.
Of course there are.
But as in so many issues related to health care and how we finance it, a relatively small problem has become magnified to appear as if it's a much larger one.
And that is most definitely not the case.