Sunday, November 25, 2007

Fresh Pain for the Uninsured - Yahoo! News

Fresh Pain for the Uninsured - Yahoo! News:
"Until recently her mother, Carolyn, who waits tables at the same roadside diner, sent Hot Spring $100 a month under the nonprofit hospital's longstanding zero-interest payment plan. Dial says she couldn't make payments herself because she spends more than $150 a month for other treatment and insulin.

Sophisticated Help

In October she learned that Hot Spring had transferred her account to a company called CompleteCare, one of the many small firms fueling the little-known medical debt revolution. Enticed by the enormous potential market of uninsured and poorly insured patients, financial giants such as General Electric (NYSE:GE - News), U.S. Bancorp (NYSE:USB - News), Capital One (NYSE:COF - News), and Citigroup (NYSE:C - News) are rapidly expanding in the field or joining the fray for the first time. CompleteCare informed Dial that under the complicated terms of her newly financed debt, her minimum monthly payment had shot up more than fourfold, to $455. Dial says she doesn't have anywhere close to that amount left over after rent, food, and other doctor visits: 'Every extra dime I have goes to paying medical bills.'"

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