Strapped Americans scrimping on insurance

Aug 12, 2008 @ 12:53 pm

By Darla Mercado

Scrimping to make ends meet, many Americans are cutting back on medical care to deal with rising costs and a worsening economy, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

In a survey of 686 consumers, the Kansas City, Mo. group discovered that 22% have cut back on the number of trips they take to a doctor as a result of todayís economy.

Eleven percent of respondents have reduced the number of prescription drugs they take or the dosage of these medications to stretch the prescription over a longer period of time.

While consumers are trimming their medical costs, many of them havenít changed their insurance policies, although some either reduced coverage or canceled it altogether: 85% kept their policies as is, 2% cut back on coverage, 1% fell behind on payments and 2% called off their coverage altogether. The rest of those polled didnít have coverage or didnít answer the question..

There were similar results for life insurance: 78% havenít made changes to their policy. However, 1% reduced coverage, 2% lapsed on their payments and 3% canceled their policies. Others polled didnít answer the question or didnít have insurance.

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