Yin on Alarming Methods for Repaying Medical Debt

Wesley Yin, associate professor of public policy and management at UCLA Luskin, spoke to the New York Times about new options for paying off medical debt that can ultimately be more costly than using regular credit cards. Medical debt is a burden that has plagued many Americans throughout the years, with about 23 million adults owing more than $250 in health care debt. Yin said some financing plans for repaying this debt have alarming consequences. Some lenders provide small loans at a zero-percent interest rate if it is paid over the course of a few weeks. If the debt cannot be repaid by the deadline, however, high interest will be charged retroactively from the start of the loan. Other financing plans charge extremely high interest rates, with the annual percentage rate of a typical medical credit card being 27%. 


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