Largest Increase on Health Care Spending in 50 Years

Most major newspapers have leapt on a CMS report, released Wednesday, that showed healthcare spending continued to grow in the US last year. The report indicates that healthcare spending now constitutes 17.3% of the country’s GDP, and is only predicted to increase more over the coming years.

The Washington Post: “Healthcare spending in the United States grew last year despite a contracting economy.” The 1.1% increase “in 2009 compared with 2008” is “the largest one-year increase since at least 1960.” The government estimates that by 2019, “healthcare spending will be $2 trillion higher than it is now, it will represent 19.3 percent of the economy, and the government will pay 52 percent of it.”

USA Today reports that the figures are “the latest indication of the nation’s mounting medical expenses and it comes as Congress has stalled on President Obama’s proposal to revamp the healthcare system.”

The New York Times  points out that “A major factor in the growth of health spending was the increase in Medicaid enrollment and Medicaid spending as a result of rising unemployment. As people lost jobs, they lost private insurance, and many turned to Medicaid.”

I have said before that the current system is unsustainable; these increases show part of the reason why…

Let us know what you think!

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Filed under Health Care Reform, Health Care Spending

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