Group pays off $1.5M in New Yorkers' unpaid medical debt

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - The medical bills of nearly 1,300 upstate New York residents have been paid off thanks to the efforts of two women working with an organization that buys medical debt bundled for pennies on the dollar.

The Times Union of Albany reports Judith Jones and Carolyn Kenyon, both of Ithaca, raised $12,500 last summer and donated it to RIP Medical Debt. The four-year-old, New York-based not-for-profit corporation buys and forgives unpaid medical debt across the U.S. for those in need.

The newspaper reports Monday that the group used the donation to pay off medical debts totaling $1.5 million for 1,284 people in upstate New York.

Jones and Kenyon are members of Finger Lakes for the New York Health Act, a chapter of Campaign for New York Health, which advocates for universal health coverage.