While it is unfortunate that some people can't pay their medical bills there are a lot of hospitals that will try and work on developing a payment plan. I think failure to pay medical should be on the credit report because lenders need to see if there is any reason why you might stop paying them.
Don't use that post-surgery fog as an excuse to ignore medical bills, even if you're still contesting them with your doctor or health insurer. Otherwise, your credit score will need to heal, too.
Medical debt is the most common type of collection account, representing nearly half of all reported collections. Almost 1 in 6 credit reports contain a medical debt collection, according to the Federal Reserve. And about 2 in 5 Americans reported a lower credit rating last year due to unpaid medical bills.
The damage a medical collections account can do to your credit can be devastating, making it harder to get loans at low interest rates. A new proposed bill would give consumers more time to resolve medical bills before they show up as collection items. But many consumer advocates want these types of collections excluded altogether from credit reports, saying they don't reflect a person's credit risk.
"There's a lot of controversy, but it's not our role to tell lenders what should be considered," says Maxine Sweet, vice president of public education at credit reporting bureau Experian. "More than any other debt, it requires consumers to work harder to protect themselves."
Debt, medical or not is part of life. Medical debt does lie in a gray area though. While I believe it should affect your credit, I can see both sides. However, hospitals, clinics, etc are always willing to set up affordable payment plans. In the instance, my support for it on your credit rating stands.
I do not think this is fair at all. Some people work very hard and still live pay check to pay check. then something may happen that put them in the hospital and even though they have insurance their bill still comes back as them owing thousands. Now this person has this debt that they may or may not be paying on and it ruins their credit. Now if they want to apply for help to pay off some with a loan their credit is shot and they can not.
Why would someone's medical condition or previous medical condition reflect their credit report? In other countries, maybe, due to the fact that they actually CARE about their citizens and want them to receive medical treatment, but in the United States, no way. For one, they over charge for simple procedures and in some cases hospitals charge a fee just for sitting in the waiting room. Nobody can honestly predict when they will fall ill and whether that illness would require hospital stays or surgeries. Most American's do not make enough money at work to be able to afford health insurance even under the "Affordable Care Act". To have your medical bills affect your credit rating, you might as well tell a person who wants to buy a car, "Nope, you were hospitalized in 2005 for an appendicitis that resulted in an appendectomy, you owe them 555,000 dollars, how do I know you will pay me the 329.00 per month on this vehicle"? Truly absurd.
There is absolutely no sound reason why a person's health should reflect against them and their fiscal responsibility. If a person suddenly experiences a major trauma and cannot afford that major trauma it is not their fault that the healthcare system does not support the uninsured and that they are stuck with a bill likened to that of a insurance company.
There is a stark difference between poor fiscal choices and sudden, unavoidable debt.