Record numbers of U.S. adults report delaying medical treatment due to the cost, according to a Gallup report published Dec. 9.
A third of all respondents to Gallup’s survey affirmed they had “put off any sort of medical treatment because of the cost [they] would have to pay,” with 25% of respondents saying they had delayed treatment for a very or somewhat serious condition.
These are both all-time highs, with the 33% delaying any type of treatment matching 2014’s response and the 25% delaying treatment for serious conditions surpassing the previous high in 2014 by three points.
Both decisions have seen significant increases since 2001, when 19% of respondents said they had delayed any type of treatment and 12% said they put off treatment for serious conditions.
Lower income households are significantly more likely to have delayed treatment, with 36% of households earning less than $40,000 annually having done so for serious conditions, compared to 25% of households earning between $40,000 and $100,000, and 13% of those earning $100,000 or more.
Democrats (34%) were significantly more likely than Republicans (25%) or independents (15%) to put off treatment – or have a family member do so – for a serious medical condition.
This publication follows another Gallup report published in November finding that 34 million (13.4% of the U.S. population) knew at least one person who died as a result of not having funds to pay for treatment.
The margin of error is plus-or-minus 4%.
The full report is available here.