More Than Half of Calif. Residents Are Surprised by Medical Bills
Details of Survey
For the survey, researchers polled 7,407 representative residents from all 50 states and Washington, D.C.
Of those surveyed:
- About 50% had employer-sponsored health coverage;
- 18% were Medicare beneficiaries;
- 12% had individual coverage;
- 9% were Medicaid beneficiaries; and
- 4% had military or Veterans Health Administration coverage.
Findings of Survey
Overall, 80% of respondents wanted cost estimates for the health care services they used -- nearly the same percentage who wanted to receive prompt test results and accurate diagnoses. Meanwhile, 63% wanted to know the full cost of their care and 37% wanted to know what their out-of-pocket costs would be.
Despite those desires, more than half of respondents said they were confused about their medical bills. In addition:
- 62% said they were surprised by their out-of-pocket costs; and
- Only 25% were offered cost estimates before receiving care (Shinkman, Payers & Providers, 6/25).
In California, 57% of residents surveyed said their medical bills were surprising and just 28% said they had received a cost estimate before undergoing care (Payers & Providers, 6/25).
However, about 48% of respondents in California said it was easy to find cost information before undergoing treatment (TransUnion Healthcare survey, June 2014).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.