Blog - RIP Medical Debt

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Help Hope Live was founded in 1983 by a transplant surgeon and his wife, a nurse, when they saw their patients struggling to afford the cost of a heart transplant on their own—especially since insurance considered the life-saving procedure “experimental” and would not assist with the cost.

Bre Hartel, 48, has $1,800 in outstanding medical debt. She’s one of millions of Americans struggling to pay their medical bills. During routine blood work in May 2021, Hartel discovered that she had high blood pressure. Experiencing blurred vision and nausea, she was told if she didn’t see a doctor right away, she could have a stroke. She headed straight to the emergency room.  That visit may have saved Hartel’s life but the medical bills that piled on top of her other expenses still weigh her down. 

The political organization led by prominent Democrat Stacey Abrams is branching out into paying off medical debts. The Fair Fight Political Action Committee on Wednesday told The Associated Press it has donated $1.34 million from its political action committee to the nonprofit organization RIP Medical Debt to wipe out debt with a face value of $212 million that is owed by 108,000 people in Georgia, Arizona, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.

With delivery delays likely and people yet to recover from the pandemic or the year’s fires and floods, a charitable donation on someone’s behalf could be a choice this holiday season. Americans gave at a record level last year and experts hope that will continue this year as the stock market soars. Donations typically surge at the end of the year, from #GivingTuesday, which is the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, through the last day of December. “We’re in the second really unique giving season this year,” said Alix Guerrier, chief executive of GlobalGiving, a nonprofit organization that […]

Regions Bank announced a new grant as well as additional online financial wellness tools designed to help people and families address urgent issues surrounding medical financial hardships. U.S. Census Bureau data has shown nearly one in five households in the U.S. carried medical debt – and those figures were compiled before the COVID-19 pandemic prompted additional medical expenses for many people nationwide. As part of Regions’ commitment to improving financial wellness, the bank is making a $50,000 contribution to RIP Medical Debt, a nonprofit that leverages donations to purchase large bundles of medical debt and then relieve that […]

If your credit score has been bruised by medical debt—making it near-impossible for you to borrow money, find a good place to rent, or even get a job—relief might be on the way. Credit-reporting giants like Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion are set to change how they report medical debt this July, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday. They plan to wipe already-paid-off medical debt that’s been sent to collection agencies, as well as stop adding new, unpaid debt until a year after it’s been lingering in collections, rather than the current six-month timeline. 

“At the time I received your letter I was feeling down & defeated. Then your letter came. All I could do was say WOW WOW WOW.” “I was going through the worst year of my life when this letter showed up. I found a little hope in the darkness.” “Life has hit us with some hard blows mentally, spiritually, and financially. Opening your letter to find that my medical debt has been paid in full, I will never forget. You have truly blessed our lives with your generosity, compassion, and love.” These are just a […]

In 2011, Jerry Ashton was working in the debt collection industry and living in lower Manhattan’s financial district. There, he had front-row seats to the Occupy Wall Street gatherings and demonstrations based out of Zuccotti Park. Ashton, a former Navy journalist and naturally curious, began chatting with some of the activists, and he quickly found himself connecting with a working group that was dedicated to purchasing and paying off medical debt as a charitable act. The group’s mission was about more than retiring medical debt, though. It was about calling attention to the failings of […]

By Allison SessoExecutive Director, RIP Medical Debt About a decade ago Vanessa was working as a nurse in Massachusetts. She was married with a 6-year-old boy and an infant daughter when she needed a surgical procedure and decided to go to the hospital where she worked. That surgery, unfortunately, led to more after many complications were encountered. Over the next few years, she was hospitalized multiple times and even found herself in the ICU.  Vanessa was fully insured this whole time, but her copays were high and kept adding up. She had young children to […]

Two-thirds of all U.S. bankruptcies stem from medical debt, and one-quarter of all U.S. credit card debt is medical, according to nonprofit RIP Medical Debt. Since its launch in 2014, organizations have been teaming up with RIP Medical Debt to erase medical debts for local community members. For every $100 donation, RIP Medical Debt relieves $10,000 in medical debt.  The New York City-based nonprofit limits its debt purchases to people who earn less than twice the poverty level, have out-of-pocket medical expenses that total more than 5 percent of their income or face bankruptcy. Read More […]

A Clarksville church covered nearly $120,000 worth of the Peter family’s medical bills. Watch Video on Yahoo

When flight paramedic Rita Krenz boards a helicopter, she knows her patients are about to face problems she can’t fix — a health care system that buries people in debt after a car accident or stroke. So she decided to do something about it. She turned for help to RIP Medical Debt, a nonprofit that buys and relieves medical debt. Krenz started a fundraising campaign that brought in more than $18,000 for the charity. That money has helped RIP Medical Debt relieve the debt of more than 900 people so far, with the average bill […]

A church in Washington state raised more than $300,000 in an effort to relieve the burden of medical debt for families across the Northwest.  Now, families within six states who have been “held hostage” by their expenses will be cleared of their debt thanks to the combined efforts of Valley Real Life and RIP Medical Debt, the church’s outreach pastor Steve Allen told Fox News.  Read More on Fox News

Pastor Kenny Camacho has long believed the United States health caresystem is broken. Years ago, on the heels of a costly cancer scare in his family, his infant daughter fell off the changing table. The Annapolis, Maryland, family rushed to the hospital but hesitated outside for hours. His daughter ended up being fine, but he says he still remembers the fear of going into debt for medical treatment, which kept him from going in. “That feeling of being invisible and incapable of taking care of my family has stuck with me,” Camacho said. “That’s not how […]

Why do we need acts of charity to rescue Americans from crushing medical bills? Vanessa Matos couldn’t believe what she was reading. “I was like, OK, this is a scam,” she recalled of the letter she received in February. Her husband, she said, had the same reaction: “Yeah, this isn’t real.” But it was. Ms. Matos’s medical debt — more than $900 owed because of complications from surgery at the Massachusetts hospital where she had worked as a nurse — had been relieved by strangers at a church she had never been to. Adam Mabry, […]