Resources

December 15, 2014

Aspen Institute Showcases CarePayment As Model to Solve Unaffordable Care Problem

By laura aylward

PORTLAND, OR (December 15, 2014) – National patient financing company CarePayment® offers a compelling model of a market-based solution that solves the pressing major social and economic problem of unaffordable care for middle-class and lower-income working families, according to a new report from the Aspen Institute. CarePayment offers patient financing programs at 0.00% APR for the life of the account and no impact on consumer credit reports.

The report, The Bottom Line: Investing for Impact on Economic Mobility in the U.S., showcases innovative private-sector approaches for tackling social and economic issues versus relying on philanthropy or government support. According to the case study of CarePayment, the company identified a market need and “a win-win solution to overcome it, helping moderate- and lower-income families straining to pay medical costs not covered by insurance.”

To underscore the urgency for finding patient-friendly programs to help people receive and pay for medical care, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released a report about the 43 million Americans with overdue medical debt on their credit reports on the same day the Aspen Institute released its report. As Julie Solomon, one of the principal researchers of a related study cited in the report, says about CarePayment: “For certain amounts of debt in relation to people’s income, being able to pay it off a little bit at a time, with no interest, without it going to collection, that really helps people out.”

“People shouldn’t have to choose between needed medical treatment or paying the mortgage or even putting food on the table. But lots of people are forced to make those choices every day, with potentially devastating health and financial consequences. In fact, medical debt is the leading cause of personal bankruptcy,” says Craig Hodges, CarePayment CEO. “CarePayment gives patients an affordable way to manage their medical expenses over time and gives them peace of mind.”

CarePayment partners with hospitals, physician practices and other providers nationwide, such as Emory Healthcare, Metro Health and Holston Medical Group.

CarePayment can serve as a lifeline to families such as Kendra’s, whose story is profiled in the Aspen Institute case study. Kendra is a social worker who has supported her family of four since her husband, a veteran, became disabled. The family racked up $3,500 in medical bills after opting for an insurance plan with a $5,000 deductible and $50 co-pays. Afraid her unpaid bills would be turned over to a collection agency, Kendra contacted Mercy Health for help and was offered the option of utilizing CarePayment financing. Kendra now pays a manageable $79 a month. “I wanted the hospital to get paid,” she told the Aspen Institute. “I would never want to not pay.”