Medical Debt Crisis: Impact on Black American Families

July 13, 2022

Watch Recording

July 13, 2022

Despite the aims of the Affordable Care Act, medical debt remains a looming crisis, disproportionately affecting Black households and communities. Race contributes to whether households have medical debt, with 28% of Black households carrying medical debt compared to 17% of white non-Hispanic households. Households in the South, the region with the highest concentration of Black people, carry more medical debt than households in other areas of the country. Structural and systemic racism underlies these disparities in medical debt. For these reasons, medical debt must be addressed as a racial justice issue that exacerbates the existing racial wealth and health gap facing Black families and communities. During this webinar, we will discuss:

  • Introduction to racial wealth and health divide
  • Intersection between medical debt and the racial wealth divide
  • State and federal policy solutions addressing the racial impacts of medical debt
  • The need for more community resources on medical debt

Participants will be encouraged to share their experiences in healthcare advocacy, data trends they have seen in medical debt in their states, and best practices and policy ideas for addressing medical debt in Black communities.


Dedrick Asante-Muhammad, National Community Reinvestment Coalition
Erin C. Fuse-Brown, Georgia State University
Venus R. Lockett, Georgia Consumer
Berneta L. Haynes, National Consumer Law Center

Moderated by Odette Williamson (National Consumer Law Center) and Stacey Wright (Community Catalyst)