Health care costs are the top financial problem for American families, according to a Gallup poll released Thursday.
When asked an open-ended question — “What is the most important financial problem facing your family today?” — 17% of respondents cited health care costs, followed by 11% who said lack of money or low wages and 8% who pointed to college expenses. One in five Americans told the pollsters they do not have a "most important financial problem," the second-highest rate for that response in Gallup’s 14 years of asking the question.
Gallup notes, though, that health care is especially likely to be named as a financial concern by older Americans, with 25% of adults between the ages of 50 and 64 and 23% of those 65 or older raising the issue.
“Even in generally good economic times, Americans still face significant personal financial challenges,” Gallup’s Jeffrey M. Jones noted. “Foremost among these are healthcare costs, which have been a consistent concern over time but currently stand above all other concerns. As such, healthcare will likely continue to be a major focus in national elections, including the 2020 presidential election. Older Americans, who are more likely to need healthcare and who are more likely to vote than younger Americans, may pay special attention to what the candidates' plans are for addressing healthcare costs.”