Spending on health care has increased every year since 1960, and even though the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has slowed the growth of premium spending, it has also resulted in higher deductibles. That, in turn, has led to rising medical out-of-pocket costs in the United States, with the average deductible reaching $1,478 in 2016. Over half of all workers in the United States now have a deductible over $1,000. Workers may not need to pay as much monthly for their health care, but when they actually need to use their insurance, it costs them much more.

The problem for many individuals and families is that they don’t have over $1,000 saved to cover their out-of-pocket costs, which can put them in a difficult situation when a medical emergency occurs or when they need an important treatment. They’re stuck with two options: obtain the care they need and put themselves in a financial hole, or hold off on getting that care and put their own health at risk.

Delaying treatment is often not an option, and even if it is, it’s almost always better for the individual to get treatment promptly. No amount of money is worth an individual’s health, and waiting to get treatment can make the issue worse. There are a few ways for an individual to pay out-of-pocket costs when they don’t have much money saved.

Financing with Credit Cards

The first option is paying the bill with one or more credit cards. Getting into credit card debt isn’t ideal, but there are times when it’s necessary. Putting medical bills on credit cards allows the individual to get the treatment needed immediately and pay it off at their own pace, as long as they make at least the minimum payment every month. This makes using a credit card to finance medical expenses one of the most flexible payment options.

Reaching Out to Family and Friends

If an individual has family members and friends that can lend a hand, asking to borrow money is a good choice. By asking multiple people and then pooling that money together, the individual can get a smaller amount from each person instead of asking for a large amount of cash from one party. Even though this option requires that an individual should swallow his pride to ask for help, he’ll likely find that there are plenty of people who don’t mind lending money in a time of need.

Applying for an Installment Loan

If all else fails, an individual can take out a personal loan to cover their medical bills. He will have the loan for a specific term length and will need to make loan payments on time. Short-term loans tend to have much faster application processes than long-term loans, which can be helpful when the individual needs to pay a bill right away.

Installment loans are one solution to medical bills for those individuals without the credit to cover those bills and who may not have family and friends who can help them. With an installment loan, an individual can get an immediate financial boost and pay off the loan over a series of installments. Installment loans should not be used as a long-term solution to money woes, because the loans are not intended for that purpose, but they can work well as a short-term solution for emergency expenses, such as unexpected medical bills.

The content on this site is for informational purposes only and is not professional financial advice. MaxLend does not assume responsibility for advice given. All advice should be weighed against your own abilities and circumstances and applied accordingly. It is up to the reader to determine if advice is safe and suitable for their own situation.

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