Recession Contributes To Slowest Annual Rate Of Increase In Health Spending In Five Decades

Office of the Actuary, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services , Baltimore, Maryland, USA.
Health Affairs (Impact Factor: 4.64). 01/2011; 30(1):11-22. DOI: 10.1377/hlthaff.2010.1032
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT In 2009, US health care spending grew 4.0 percent--a historically low rate of annual increase--to $2.5 trillion, or $8,086 per person. Despite the slower growth, the share of the gross domestic product devoted to health spending increased to 17.6 percent in 2009 from 16.6 percent in 2008. The growth rate of health spending continued to outpace the growth of the overall economy, which experienced its largest drop since 1938. The recession contributed to slower growth in private health insurance spending and out-of-pocket spending by consumers, as well as a reduction in capital investments by health care providers. The recession also placed increased burdens on households, businesses, and governments, which meant that fewer financial resources were available to pay for health care. Declining federal revenues and strong growth in federal health spending increased the health spending share of total federal revenue from 37.6 percent in 2008 to 54.2 percent in 2009.

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