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One-third of millennials don't budget for healthcare expenses: 5 payment trends to know

TransUnion released a new report on how millennials are reacting and interacting with healthcare insurance, payment and debt.

"Millennials are facing a tough road. In some ways they were placed at an early disadvantage compared to previous generations," said Jonathan Wiik, author of Healthcare Revolution: The Patient is the New Payer and Principal for Healthcare Strategy at TransUnion Healthcare. "Despite these challenges, our research indicates that millennials are indeed interested in responsibly paying their medical debts, while at the same time, healthcare providers will need to get innovative to make the payment process more manageable for millennials."

The study found:

1. Millennials are less likely to understand their health insurance benefits than older generations; 57 percent of millennials reported little or no understanding of their benefits, compared with 50 percent of Gen X and 41 percent of Baby Boomers.

2. Most millennials have health insurance, but typically pay their medical bills at a slower rate than other generations. Last year, 74 percent of millennials didn't pay medial bills in full, compared to 68 percent of Gen X and 60 percent of Baby Boomers. However, 70 percent of millennials said they'd pay in full if they had the money to do so.

3. Just over one-third of millennials reported they don't plan for medical or healthcare expenses in their budgets, and 80 percent don't have health savings accounts to pay for out-of-pocket expenses.

4. Half of millennials don't feel prepared to manage their healthcare or medical expenses, compared to 42 percent of Gen X and 33 percent of Baby Boomers.

5. Millennials are more likely to cost compare with insurance companies than older generations; 40 percent of millennials compare cost of services by healthcare provider, compared to 29 percent of Gen X and 22 percent of Baby Boomers.

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