More Americans Favor Medical Debt Forgiveness Than Wiping Away Student Loan Debt

While the federal government still works out all the kinks related to its plan to forgive student loan debt for individuals, the rest of the country is already moving on to the next type of debt they want to see forgiven — medical debt. More than 90% of respondents to a nationwide poll, including 84% of Republicans, either “somewhat” or “strongly support” forgiveness of unpaid medical debts.

More than half of the survey’s respondents indicated that all unpaid medical debts should be forgiven, while 45% said there should be some limit on the amount of the forgiveness.

Interestingly enough, older Americans were less likely to voice their support for forgiving medical debt. Only 81% of respondents over the age of 54 said they would somewhat or strongly support medical debt forgiveness. Older Americans are less likely to be in favor of such a proposal because they are less likely to be carrying unpaid medical debts.

Of those surveyed, nearly one-third were currently carrying some amount of unpaid medical debt and another 30% had unpaid medical debts in the past.

While 84% of Republicans support medical debt forgiveness, only 64% of them support the student loan forgiveness plan that has been proposed. Weirdly, 19% of Republicans said that if President Biden chose to support a plan for medical debt forgiveness, such an announcement would make them less in favor of the idea.

When it comes to how much medical debt should be forgiven, 55% said all of it. Others put conditions on the forgiveness, such as the type of debt (COVID-related costs, for example) or the age of the individuals with the debt. While fewer older Americans supported the idea of medical debt forgiveness, more people were in favor of forgiving their debt.

Of the 45% who want only a portion of medical debt forgiven, $25,000 was the most common answer to how much should be wiped away.

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