Monday, July 23, 2007

The Myth of Medical Bankruptcies

One of the arguments cited by advocates of socialized medicine is that the high costs associated with the current system of medical care drive too many uninsured patients into personal bankruptcy.

Recently, Todd Zywicki, Professor of Law at George Mason University School of Law, testified to the US Congress that this was not the case. A copy of his July 17, 2007 testimony to the United States House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law is available here (MS Word document). Some of his key points are as follows:

"There is No Evidence That There Has Been An Increase in the Frequency or Severity of Job Loss or Income Interruption as a Result of Health Problems"

"There is Little Evidence That Medical Debt Is a Major Causal Factor in Bankruptcy Filings"

"[T]here is no evidence that lack of medical insurance is a major causal factor in bankruptcy filings."

Each point substantiated with the appropriate evidence and citations.

(Via HealthCareBS and Volokh.)