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David Brooks

David Brooks

National Poll Shows Healthcare Costs Top Financial Concerns


While Americans always seem to have something to be concerned about; a new national poll from Gallup shows that Americans are most concerned today with healthcare costs when considering ALL financial concerns for those living in the United States.  The poll further went on to show that a majority of those living in America believe that the Federal government should also make it possible for all Americans to have healthcare coverage.

Two other polls that were recently published also point out that most citizens of the United States are concerned about healthcare coverage for themselves and their families.  In fact, a growing number of poll respondents now appear to be favoring a single-payer healthcare system.

Gallup points out that some of the anxiety around the topic of healthcare could be due to all of the uncertainty regarding the current healthcare policy and the effort to repeal and replace the law.  In 2010, healthcare concerns spiked as the ACA was being signed into law and many Americans made clear that the costs of healthcare were their top concern.

While healthcare costs were the top anxiety for Americans at 19 percent, other financial concerns cited by those who responded to the poll included high debt at 11 percent, college expenses at 10 percent and lack of money at 10 percent.

One bright spot worth noting is that some financial anxieties have lessened in recent years.  While 10% of respondents say low wages are their families biggest financial problem; this percentage is the lowest number seen since before the financial crisis of 2008 began.


Americans Worry Over Healthcare Uncertainty

Anxious Woman Worries About Healthcare

As the debate continues on Capitol Hill about the future of healthcare in the United States, the issue is also on the minds of many Americans as well.  Whether Obamacare continues to move forward in one form or another or is replaced by something completely different, a majority of Americans are now concerned about their ability to afford health insurance in the future.

A new study from shows that in the last year, one out of four families have chosen not to make use of medical professionals because they felt they couldn’t afford the expense even though they believed they needed it.  The fact that Americans are choosing not to get medical advice due to the cost is of great concern. also pointed out that 13 percent of those responding to their survey didn’t have any healthcare insurance at all; which is quite a risk when considering that medical bills have the capability of leading to large debt that could take many years to pay off.

The survey showed that a full 56% of Americans say that they are concerned that they might not have the option of affordable healthcare in the years to come.  This anxiety has led some to worry that they might be faced with the painful choice to not care for medical issues of a serious nature due to an inability to pay for their services.  In the meantime, as the healthcare debate continues; American anxiety continues to grow.

Lyft & Blue Cross Blue Shield Team Up to Provide Patients Free Rides to Doctor Appointments

Free Rides to Doctor Appointments

A strategic alliance between Lyft and Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) has become a reality to help ensure that patients are able to arrive to appointments with their doctors; a service that is free to the patient.  BCBS is made up of 36 independent and locally operated companies with a total of more than 100 million members with the potential for service needs.  Lyft, a ride-sharing company based in San Francisco, is one of the fastest growing ride-sharing companies in the country, currently serving more than 300 cities.

Lyft has created similar alliances with other healthcare organizations in the last few months such as MedStar Mobile Healthcare, Logisticare, Executive Care, National Federation of the Blind and SafeRide Health to name a few.  The president and Chief Medical Officer of the BCBS Institute, Trent Haywood, MD, pointed out that eighty percent of all healthcare outcomes are shaped by “social determinants” including transportation.

Mr. Hayword further pointed out that transportation assistance is available for patients receiving Medicaid, but further stated that access to healthcare due to a lack of reliable transportation has put millions of Americans at risk.  This mindset clearly influenced the decision-making leading up to the partnership between BCBS and Lyft.  “A strategic alliance with Lyft will allow us to positively impact and improve Americans’ health nationwide” said Haywood.  He further stated that BCBS companies “have always been committed to local communities-and solving the most pressing healthcare challenges facing our country.”

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