US health spending rises at slowest rate since 1960

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 08 December 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g7534
  1. Michael McCarthy
  1. 1Seattle

Healthcare spending in the United States grew last year at the lowest rate since records of the nation’s health expenditure began in 1960, a new analysis shows.

The analysis, conducted by the Office of the Actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services,1 found that US healthcare spending increased by 3.6% in 2013 to reach $2.9 trillion (£1.85trn; €2.35trn), equal to $9255 a person. The study was published online on 3 December by the journal Health Affairs.

The 2013 rate was 0.5% lower than the 4.1% rate seen in 2012 and was consistent with a trend of slow growth in healthcare spending that has persisted in the US since the 2009 recession, during which time rates have ranged from 3.6% to 4.1%. …

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