More Americans struggling to meet the rising cost of their own health care are turning to online crowdfunding sites like Helping Hand Crowd.com, to collect money for out-of-pocket expenses, like surgeries, co-pays and medication.
According to a 2011 study by the National Bureau of Economic Research, half of American adults say they wouldn't be able to easily produce $2,000 in the event of a medical emergency. Nearly 75 percent of those surveyed said that, to come up with the money, they would have to dip into savings, ask friends and family for help or rely on credit cards or a home equity line of credit.
For many, those drastic steps create personal financial crises from which they cannot recover. A 2012 study released by the American Journal of Medicine found that 62 percent of all bankruptcies filed in 2007 were tied to medical expenses.