Fair Debt

Hosted ByLex Patterson

Unlocking Possibilities...

Episode 07: Outside The Medical Debt Box

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

According to CBS News Customers at Credit Karma carried an additional $2.2 billion in overdue medical debt from January 2020 through March 2021, reaching about $47 billion in total — the highest point in at least 16 months. Overdue medical bills are also impacting more people, Credit Karma also found that an additional 2.5 million people saw their medical debt enter collections since the pandemic started. 

In this episode, we talk in depth about healthcare receivables and an out-of-the-box approach to some of the issues surrounding healthcare debt.  

In 2014 two former debt collection executives, Craig Antico and Jerry Ashton founded a company called RIP Medical Debt. Their website mentions they’ve helped over 2.5 million people abolish 4 billion dollars of medical debt and that number is growing every day.  With so much medical debt and increasing healthcare costs, we need out-of-the-box solutions. Craig shares insight into healthcare debt, why it makes sense to embrace additional options in how to handle the debt, and lessons learned in their journey.

Guest: Craig Antico

Craig Antico is the co-founder of  RIP Medical Debt, the national charity that has acquired and abolished over $5 billion in unpayable medical debt for over three million people since 2014. 

Craig understands the ins and outs of the debt collection industry because he was a financial industry leader in collections, debt buying, and outsourcing for 30-years! After completing his undergraduate degree at Florida Southern College in finance and economics, Craig went on to Pace University for his MBA in finance. His decades of experience include working for IBM, Johnson & Johnson, and several Fortune 100 companies.

Purchasing medical debts to then abolish them, the core of RIP’s work, didn’t cross Craig’s mind until a chance introduction facilitated by his long-time partner in the debt collection industry – and RIP co-founder – Jerry Ashton. Jerry had connected with a group of activists that wanted to cancel debts as a charitable good using donated funds. Realizing the depth and scope of medical debt’s burden on already struggling Americans, Craig and Jerry resolved to start a nonprofit to champion this cause.

After a hard road learning how to raise money, Craig and Jerry got their big break in 2016 when producers from the HBO series, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, inquired about the show’s host purchasing and eliminating medical debt for an upcoming episode. Thanks to RIP’s guidance, John Oliver abolished $15 million in debt on a segment that has been watched by over fifteen million people.

Craig has appeared on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, PBS Newshour, and many other media outlets, including over 50 local TV stations throughout the country. The New York Times, The Guardian, Forbes, AARP, The Washington Post, and many others have published articles about Antico and RIP Medical Debt.  He is the author of the book “End Medical Debt,” now in its second edition. 


    Website: https://ripmedicaldebt.org/

    Company LinkedIn:  https://www.linkedin.com/company/rip-medical-debt/

   LinkedIn: Personal: https://www.linkedin.com/in/antico/

    Email:  cjantico@gmail.com

   LinkedIn: Personal: https://www.linkedin.com/in/antico/

Additional Resources:

RIP Medical Debt Story

2021 US Census Medical Debt in America Report

Federal Poverty Level Guidelines

The Patient, The Doctor and the Bill Collector

End Medical Debt

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