Navigation Links
U.S. Health Care Spending Now at $2.7 Trillion: Report

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Health care spending grew nearly 4 percent in 2011, reaching $2.7 trillion -- a new high, according to a federal government report issued Monday.

Although this seems like a huge amount of money, the rise actually represents the third consecutive year of "relatively slow growth," the researchers said. Whether spending will pick up again as the economy improves, as it has in the past, isn't known, they added.

"The stable growth in national health spending in 2011 is the result of mixed trends," Micah Hartman, a statistician in the Office of the Actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said during a Monday afternoon press conference.

These trends include slowed growth (compared to years past) in expenditures for health insurance, government-funded research and funding for public health, Hartman said.

Those slowdowns, however, were "offset by faster growth in personal health care goods and services," Hartman noted. "The main drivers of the spending trends were Medicare, private health insurance and consumer out-of-pocket payments," he said.

Health care reform has had little effect on spending numbers so far, the researchers said. Although some provisions of the Obama Administration's Affordable Care Act were in place in 2011, their effect on spending was minimal, Hartman said. It won't be until 2014 and beyond that the full benefits of the law will be seen, he said.

The report, which is issued annually, was published in the January issue of the journal Health Affairs.

Among other findings in the report:

  • Health care spending as a part of the country's gross domestic product (GDP) has remained steady at 17.9 percent from 2009 to 2011.
  • Americans' personal health care spending increased briskly -- from 3.7 percent in 2010 to 4.1 percent in 2011 -- in part due to higher prescription-drug prices and higher costs for doctor and clinical services, the researchers found. Personal health care includes all goods and services used to treat diseases in individual people, and excludes expenditures such as government administration and the net cost of health insurance.
  • Cost of doctor and clinical services jumped 4.3 percent in 2011, compared to about 3 percent in 2010, Hartman said.
  • Spending on prescription drugs increased 2.9 percent in 2011, a big rise compared to the historically low annual increase of 0.4 percent in 2010. This growth is due primarily to the rise in brand-name prescribing and the introduction of new drugs.

The steep growth in drug costs, however, "was partly offset by slower growth for hospital services," Hartman said. Spending for these services was slowed by 4.2 percent, due to cuts in Medicaid and hospital use, he said.

And although the growth in spending for Medicaid slowed in 2011, spending for Medicare, private insurance and out-of-pocket costs sped up, the researchers noted.

"Medicare spending grew 6.2 percent in 2011, accelerating the growth from 4.3 percent in 2010," Hartman said. The growth was largely due to one-time spending for skilled nursing facilities, he said.

Medicaid spending increased 2.5 percent in 2011, down from 5.9 percent in 2010. The slower growth was due to states spending less on the program as matching federal grants ran out, Hartman noted.

Private insurance costs also grew as some 1 million more people enrolled. Most of these new members were children of current policy-holders recently covered by the Affordable Care Act, he said.

Out-of-pocket spending for health care among consumers grew 2.8 percent in 2011, accelerating from 2.1 percent growth in 2010, Hartman said.

As for the future, the researchers said they are concerned that spending on health care will only gain speed as the U.S. economy rebounds, something that has happened after past recessions.

More information

For more information on health care costs, visit the Kaiser Family Foundation.

SOURCES: Jan. 4, 2013, press conference with: Micah Hartman, statistician, Office of the Actuary, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Baltimore; January 2013 Health Affairs

Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Electronic health records with technical assistance can improve patient care in New York City
2. Introduces the the Original Bodylift Yoga Headstand as Used by Martha Stewart, Reverse the Negative Effects of Gravity on the Body
3. Comprehensive public health approach urged to curb gun violence in US
4. Reports 5 Ways Men Can Safeguard Their Health
5. How To Treat Acne
6. How “Acne No More” Can Help People Heal Acne Naturally – Health Reviews
7. DrugRisk Announces New Pradaxa Health Warning From Australia
8. DrugRisk Adds Latest Health Warnings and Lawsuit Updates for Yaz
9. AGNITY Healthcare Teams with Alcatel-Lucent to Deliver Innovative Mobile Healthcare Solutions over 4G LTE Mobile Networks
10. Weight-Lifting May Boost Heart Health in Black Men: Study
11. Hip Hop Abs Review of Shaun T’s DVD workout program Revealed at
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
U.S. Health Care Spending Now at $2.7 Trillion: Report
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... On June 10-11, 2016, ... the 2016 Cereal Festival and World’s Longest Breakfast Table in Battle Creek, MI, where ... city’s history as home to some of the world’s leading providers of cereal and ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Many women ... diagnosed with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not only alleviate ... that can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a pregnancy. The ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture animations, ... Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package transforms ... Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it above ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... On Friday, June 10, Van Mitchell, ... at Work award to iHire in recognition of their exemplary accomplishments in worksite health ... annual Maryland Workplace Health & Wellness Symposium at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum Heights. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 ... dangers associated with chronic pain and the benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery ... are suffering with Sickle Cell Disease. , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... and SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. , June 24, ... -based mobile pulmonary function testing company, is now able to perform ... developed by ndd Medical Technologies , Inc. ... in hospital-based labs.  Thanks to ndd,s EasyOne PRO ® , ARL ... can get any needed testing done in the comfort of her ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, a ... invasive and more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, today ... The Series-A funding is led by Innova Memphis, ... and other private investors.  Arkis, new financing will ... and the market release of its in-licensed Endexo® ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016  In a startling report released today, National Safety ... lacking a comprehensive, proven plan to eliminate prescription opioid overdoses. ... how states are tackling the worst drug crisis in recorded U.S. ... Kentucky , New Mexico , ... Of the 28 failing states, three – Michigan ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: