In a poll of 1,000 renters, 54 percent of respondents admitted delaying medical care because they could not afford it, while 95 percent of lower-income rents said their rent was the most important bill they have to pay. Among the delayed medical care cited in the study, preventive routine check-ups (42 percent), seeking treatment while sick (38 percent) and buying over-the-counter medications (35 percent) were the most commonly cited.
The study also polled 500 medical professionals, and 31 percent of respondents said at least one-quarter of their patients have expressed concerns about having an affordable place to live; among medical professionals with a large number of low-income patients, that number increases to 42 percent. Forty-four of medical professionals said a lack of accessible health care hinders the health of lower income communities.
“No one should have to choose between paying rent and paying for health care,” said Laurel Blatchford, President of Enterprise Community Partners. “And yet, thousands of people make that difficult trade off every day. That’s wrong. By working closely with health care organizations, we’re creating ways for renters to afford the health care they need.”