Summary

Eligibility
for people ages 18 years and up (full criteria)
Healthy Volunteers
healthy people welcome
Location
at UCLA
Dates
study started
estimated completion
Principal Investigator
by Wesley Yin (ucla)

Description

Summary

The goal of this study is to estimate the direct, causal impact of medical debt on health care utilization, mental health, and wellbeing of patients. The investigators will conduct a survey to measure the impact of the debt forgiveness on health care use, mental health, and wellbeing. The survey will be administered to approximately 17,000 subjects of a recent medical financial intervention. In that prior intervention, a non-profit charity, RIP Medical Debt, purchased and abolished medical debt for a randomly selected about 6,000 (out of the 17,000) individuals. In this current protocol, the investigators will administer the survey, and will compare surveyed outcomes of subjects who received and did not receive the intervention.

Details

This study will estimate the direct, causal impact of medical debt on health care utilization, mental health, and wellbeing of patients. To do so, the investigators will administer a survey to approximately 17,000 subjects of a recent medical financial intervention. In that intervention, a non-profit charity, RIP Medical Debt, purchased and abolished medical debt for a randomly selected about 6,000 (out of the 17,000) study subjects. In this current protocol, the investigators will compare surveyed outcomes of subjects who received and did not receive the medical debt abolishment intervention. Because debt abolishment was randomized, comparing surveyed outcomes of treated and control subjects in the cross-section will allow the study to estimate the causal impact of the medical debt abolishment. The survey will measure the effects of medical debt on three sets of outcomes: (i) health care utilization, as measured by medical care visits, prescription drug utilization and adherence, and unmet need for medical care; (ii) mental health, as measured by validated screens for depression and anxiety; and (iii) subjective wellbeing, as measured by self-reported health, forgone consumption, and financial strain. This study would be the first to provide a direct, causal connection between the rising personal debt associated with U.S. health care and the health outcomes of its recipients.

Keywords

Health Care Utilization Depression Anxiety Subjective Wellbeing Mental Health Medical Debt Medical debt forgiveness

Eligibility

You can join if…

Open to people ages 18 years and up

  • Individuals ages 18 and over who owed medical debt to FFAM, a debt collections agency

You CAN'T join if...

  • Excluded individuals who owed less than $500 in medical debt to FFAM
  • Excluded individuals with missing social security numbers

Location

  • UCLA IRB accepting new patients
    Los Angeles California 90095 United States

Lead Scientist at University of California Health

Details

Status
accepting new patients
Start Date
Completion Date
(estimated)
Sponsor
University of California, Los Angeles
ID
NCT04835012
Study Type
Observational
Last Updated