86% of Americans say healthcare costs negatively affect patient care, study finds

Eighty-six percent of Americans report that cost negatively impacts patient care, with 72 percent reporting that the wait for insurance pre-approvals also negatively affects care, according to the Physicians Foundation's 2019 Survey of America's Patients.

Researchers analyzed data from an online survey administered Sept. 4-13 to 2,001 adults representative of the U.S. population. Almost half (993) of respondents were ages 27-75 and had visited the same physician more than once in the past year.

Findings reveal a healthcare system that is too expensive and difficult for average Americans to navigate, according to the Physician's Foundation, with 84 percent of Americans worried about the affect healthcare costs will have on them in the future. Nearly three-fourths (73 percent) of respondents were concerned about their ability to pay for medical costs if they were to get injured or fall ill, and half felt as if they were one sickness away from serious financial problems.

About 42 percent of Americans would have financial issues after paying $500 or less, while 22 percent could afford $501-$2,500 before having financial problems. Thirty-seven percent of survey respondents could afford costs totaling $2,500 or more.

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