It’s no secret that the medical care in the United States disproportionately benefits the wealthy and leaves working class people out in the cold. However, what is less well-known is the interaction between ever-widening income inequality, poor medical coverage and rates of crime.
If someone is unable to get the medical treatment they need, whether that’s eczema care or cancer treatments, or anything in between, it can make them desperate. People who are sick and can’t get help have very different priorities from someone who is very wealthy and very comfortable.
Crime rates can be directly correlated to income inequality. This goes further for people with outstanding medical debt, or loved ones with untreated medical issues. When you or someone you love is left out in the cold when they’re sick, it’s unlikely you’re willing to play by the rules. Shoplifting, selling drugs and even stealing cars can become an attractive way to make some quick cash when you’re staring down medical bills.