GOBankingRates

Best and Worst States for Healthcare Costs

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Healthcare is one of the most common sources of stress for Americans. About 7 in 10 adults said they're worried about it, according to an American Psychological Association survey -- and the stress is coming from the cost.

Nearly 40% said their family has struggled to pay for medical services. Those with private insurance, like through an employer, were more likely than those with public insurance to say that the cost of care is stressful.

It’s not surprising that covering healthcare costs can create so much anxiety. The average amount that Americans spent per person on healthcare was $11,172 in 2018, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. In fact, a Kaiser Family Foundation survey found the cost is so high that half of American adults said they or a family member have put off getting healthcare or dental care. Nearly one-third of respondents said they haven't taken their prescription drugs because of the cost.

Considering that healthcare costs have such a major impact on Americans’ finances, GOBankingRates set out to see which states have the most -- and least -- affordable healthcare. The study analyzed data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Missouri Economic Research and Information Center on annual healthcare costs in all 50 states. GOBankingRates also factored in average hospital inpatient expenses, average annual premiums for people enrolled in employer-based health insurance plans and the median medical debt in collections for each state.

Based on the study results, you might find that care is more affordable in your state than others -- or living elsewhere could help you save money on healthcare and prescription drugs.

Last updated: Dec. 30, 2019

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1. West Virginia

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 87.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,351.97
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,986
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,353
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,222
    • A family: $4,371
  • Median medical debt in collections: $621
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2. Montana

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 95.1
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,724.57
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,070
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,115
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,232
    • A family: $5,208
  • Median medical debt in collections: $871
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3. Washington

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 118.5
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,887.08
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $3,429
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $955
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $2,558
    • A family: $3,862
  • Median medical debt in collections: $637
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4. Hawaii

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 120.3
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,976.50
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,322
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $755
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,068
    • A family: $5,475
  • Median medical debt in collections: $389
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5. Michigan

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 93.9
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,664.95
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,318
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,433
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,383
    • A family: $4,280
  • Median medical debt in collections: $537

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6. Kansas

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 98.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,898.45
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,787
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,255
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,292
    • A family: $5,248
  • Median medical debt in collections: $586
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7. Mississippi

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 91.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,550.69
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,349
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,365
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,185
    • A family: $5,680
  • Median medical debt in collections: $747
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8. Alabama

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 91.1
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,525.85
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,554
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,453
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,530
    • A family: $5,278
  • Median medical debt in collections: $665

See: The Depressing Amount You’ll Spend On Healthcare If You Live To Be 100

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9. North Dakota

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 111.8
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,554.22
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,831
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,246
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,379
    • A family: $4,982
  • Median medical debt in collections: $631
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10. Pennsylvania

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 94.4
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,689.79
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,397
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,351
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,481
    • A family: $5,111
  • Median medical debt in collections: $522

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11. South Carolina

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 94.7
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,704.70
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,047
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,427
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,222
    • A family: $5,301
  • Median medical debt in collections: $733
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12. Iowa

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 99.8
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,958.06
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,558
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,592
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,688
    • A family: $5,143
  • Median medical debt in collections: $513
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13. Indiana

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 96.5
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,794.12
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,508
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,383
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,422
    • A family: $4,551
  • Median medical debt in collections: $733
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14. Utah

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 92.7
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,605.34
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $3,026
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,183
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,196
    • A family: $4,594
  • Median medical debt in collections: $882
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15. Oklahoma

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 93
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,620.24
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,930
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,293
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,764
    • A family: $5,306
  • Median medical debt in collections: $676

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16. Nebraska

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 99.1
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,923.29
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,915
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,388
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,596
    • A family: $5,414
  • Median medical debt in collections: $578
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17. Wyoming

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 100.7
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,002.78
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,520
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,385
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,036
    • A family: $5,205
  • Median medical debt in collections: $1,121
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18. Missouri

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 98.8
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,908.38
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,274
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,403
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,490
    • A family: $5,003
  • Median medical debt in collections: $707
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19. South Dakota

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 102.2
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,077.30
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,505
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,541
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,643
    • A family: $5,810
  • Median medical debt in collections: $489
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20. Arkansas

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 86.1
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,277.45
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,765
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,375
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,840
    • A family: $5,728
  • Median medical debt in collections: $700

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21. Vermont

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 100.4
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,987.87
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,440
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,456
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,507
    • A family: $5,334
  • Median medical debt in collections: $531
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22. Idaho

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 95.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,749.41
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $3,119
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,199
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,165
    • A family: $5,211
  • Median medical debt in collections: $807
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23. Ohio

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 97.4
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,838.83
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,733
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,632
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,525
    • A family: $5,016
  • Median medical debt in collections: $462
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24. Illinois

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 99.9
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,963.03
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,515
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,548
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,302
    • A family: $5,378
  • Median medical debt in collections: $591
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25. New York

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 101.7
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,052.46
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,729
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,578
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,597
    • A family: $5,006
  • Median medical debt in collections: $442

Related: This Is What a Comfortable Retirement Will Cost You in Every State

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26. Kentucky

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 91.3
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,535.78
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,950
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,633
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,703
    • A family: $5,382
  • Median medical debt in collections: $654
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27. Colorado

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 101.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,047.49
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,920
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,289
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,390
    • A family: $4,963
  • Median medical debt in collections: $766
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28. Tennessee

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 88.5
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,396.68
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,984
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,410
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $4,023
    • A family: $5,514
  • Median medical debt in collections: $739
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29. Nevada

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 99.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,948.13
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,985
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,355
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,219
    • A family: $6,252
  • Median medical debt in collections: $845
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30. Georgia

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 95.9
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,764.31
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,798
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,476
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,724
    • A family: $5,846
  • Median medical debt in collections: $810
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31. New Mexico

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 98.2
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,878.58
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,617
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,558
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,776
    • A family: $4,723
  • Median medical debt in collections: $775
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32. North Carolina

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 110.4
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,484.67
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,098
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,295
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,537
    • A family: $5,948
  • Median medical debt in collections: $716
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33. Connecticut

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 111.9
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,559.19
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,688
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,672
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,486
    • A family: $5,352
  • Median medical debt in collections: $429
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34. Maryland

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 85.7
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,257.58
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,748
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,588
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,813
    • A family: $6,177
  • Median medical debt in collections: $460
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35. Delaware

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 99.7
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,953.10
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $3,026
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,340
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,784
    • A family: $5,715
  • Median medical debt in collections: $538
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36. Minnesota

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 110.2
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,474.74
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,329
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,575
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,832
    • A family: $6,190
  • Median medical debt in collections: $342
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37. Wisconsin

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 112.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,593.97
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,501
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,596
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,468
    • A family: $4,952
  • Median medical debt in collections: $886
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38. New Jersey

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 101.8
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,057.42
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,632
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,598
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,615
    • A family: $6,253
  • Median medical debt in collections: $483
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39. Florida

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 98.9
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,913.35
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,102
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,472
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,930
    • A family: $5,908
  • Median medical debt in collections: $782

Read More: States With the Best Affordable Healthcare for Retirees

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40. Maine

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 114.1
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,668.49
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,357
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,461
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,896
    • A family: $5,375
  • Median medical debt in collections: $707
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41. California

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 113.3
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,628.74
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $3,441
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,202
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,498
    • A family: $5,376
  • Median medical debt in collections: $795
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42. Oregon

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 114.8
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,703.26
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $3,599
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,061
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,364
    • A family: $5,913
  • Median medical debt in collections: $784
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43. New Hampshire

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 114.2
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,673.46
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,597
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,618
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $4,066
    • A family: $5,535
  • Median medical debt in collections: $456
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44. Virginia

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 97.4
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,838.83
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,953
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,746
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $4,002
    • A family: $6,597
  • Median medical debt in collections: $582
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45. Louisiana

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 97.8
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,858.70
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $1,956
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,584
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $4,195
    • A family: $6,288
  • Median medical debt in collections: $726
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46. Arizona

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 97.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,848.77
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,641
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,554
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,857
    • A family: $5,786
  • Median medical debt in collections: $864
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47. Rhode Island

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 106.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $5,295.89
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,740
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,807
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $4,066
    • A family: $5,493
  • Median medical debt in collections: $486
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48. Texas

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 95.8
  • Annual healthcare costs: $4,759.34
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,520
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,413
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $4,271
    • A family: $5,964
  • Median medical debt in collections: $850
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49. Alaska

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 148.6
  • Annual healthcare costs: $7,382.45
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $2,947
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,154
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $3,524
    • A family: $4,501
  • Median medical debt in collections: $1,277
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50. Massachusetts

  • Healthcare cost-of-living index: 123.4
  • Annual healthcare costs: $6,130.51
  • Hospital inpatient expenses per day: $3,016
  • Annual premium for:
    • A single employee: $1,903
    • An employee and one eligible family member: $4,035
    • A family: $5,693
  • Median medical debt in collections: $349

More From GOBankingRates

Methodology: GOBankingRates determined the best and worst states for healthcare costs by analyzing all 50 U.S. states along the following criteria: (1) annual healthcare costs per state, as sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' 2018 Consumer Expenditure Survey and the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center's Cost of Living Index Composite for the third quarter of 2019; (2) hospital inpatient expenses per day, as sourced from the Kaiser Family Foundation's 2017 Hospital Adjusted Expenses per Inpatient Day report, taken from the American Hospital Association Annual Survey; (3) the 2018 average annual single premium per enrolled employee for employer-based health insurance, as sourced from a Kaiser Family Foundation report based on data from the American Hospital Association Annual Survey; (4) the 2018 annual employee-plus-one premium per enrolled employee for employer-based health insurance, as sourced from a Kaiser Family Foundation report based on data from the American Hospital Association Annual Survey; (5) the average annual family premium per enrolled employee for employer-based health insurance, as sourced from a Kaiser Family Foundation report based on data from the American Hospital Association Annual Survey; and 6) the median medical debt in collections, as sourced from the Urban Institute's Debt in America report. All factors were then scored and combined, with the lowest score being best. All data used to conduct this study was compiled and verified on Dec. 9, 2019, and is subject to change.