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As inflation-weary shoppers try to make ends meet, many are turning to a modern twist on the layaway plan: buy now, pay later. But while platforms like Afterpay and Affirm were originally built to take the sting out of online shopping, these new financing options are beginning to creep into the world of health care.

“Buy now, pay later is a small fraction of the health space, but it is exploding,” said Jay Zagorksy, an economist at the Questrom School of Business at Boston University.

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