Two pieces of news provide a flicker of hope amid the doom and gloom.
LAST WEEK: Sign up for Health Care Before March 31st Deadline LAST WEEK: Sign up for Health Care Before March 31st Deadline Most people never plan to spend time in the hospital, but sometimes things happen. If you suddenly need medical care but do not have health insurance, you could be stuck paying for the entire bill on your own. With the average cost of a three-day hospital stay exceeding $30,000, it is no surprise that unexpected medical bills are the number one cause of bankruptcy in the U.S. Each year, nearly two million Americans find themselves caught between the double disaster of illness and bankruptcy, and more than 56 million adults struggle with health care related bills. Uninsured individuals experience bankruptcy and medical debt at a rate much higher than those who have health insurance. Generally speaking, if you are uninsured, you are: *More likely to pay up to 2.5 times what insured patients pay for the same hospital services; *Four times more likely to delay or forgo preventive care; *Six times more likely to go without needed care due to cost; *Five times less likely to find a primary care doctor's office or clinic that will accept you as a patient without insurance; *More likely to be diagnosed with a disease in an advanced stage, as opposed to an earlier stage with more treatment options; and *Twenty-five percent more likely to die prematurely than adults with health insurance. Don't let unexpected medical costs ruin your financial security or prevent you from getting the care that you need. The health reform law helps provide affordable healthcare insurance for individuals and families to help you avoid both the financial and health