Americans facing more difficulty paying medical bills

The Center for Study of Health System Change reports that almost 1 in 5 Americans live in families that self-report difficulty paying their medical bills. This is a big increase since 2003, when it was 15%.   My last post was about the Kaiser/HRET study showing that health insurance premium inflation is down to about 5% this year - the lowest it's been since the late 90s.  Nonetheless, employees are paying more for their insurance and facing higher deductibles and coinsurance and copayments - so the level of pain has increased.  Once again, this survey preceded the current economic meltdown, so it's likely that things will get worse before they get better.