No pennies here, just a number-filled article from Bloomberg News:U.S. Pays $2.5 Trillion for Care Costing $912 Billion http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601103&sid=aFRY..TvUM2MJuly 28 (Bloomberg) -- The last time a president tried to overhaul U.S. health care, Americans were spending $912 billion on the system and 40 million were uninsured. Today they’re spending $2.5 trillion and almost 50 million lack coverage....The experience of the 15 years since Bill Clinton failed to win passage of legislation suggests that the price of inaction may be even higher than the cost of Obama’s plan....Health-insurance premiums for families have risen 119 percent since 1999, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, a Menlo Park, California-based policy-research firm. Inflation has risen 28.5 percent over that period, according to the Labor Department.Premium costs are projected to rise another 9 percent next year, an increase that 42 percent of employers plan to pass on to their workers, according to a report last month by PricewaterhouseCoopers. That’s likely to further squeeze millions of Americans who find themselves in high-deductible insurance plans as wages stagnate because of the recession.Earnings per hour climbed by a 0.7 percent pace on average over the last three months, the Labor Department said earlier this month, the smallest gain since the agency began keeping records in 1964. Meanwhile, the share of insured workers with at least a $1,000 deductible has almost doubled since 2006 to 18 percent, according to Kaiser....“Health reform could not be more critical,” Mike Duke, president of Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the nation’s largest private employer, said in a letter last month to Obama. “Reforming health care is necessary not just to improve the health of all Americans, but also to remove the burden that is crushing America’s businesses.”For Louis Gerstner, former head of International Business Machines Corp., failure to curb medical-care costs will have a devastating, ripple effect. “If we don’t fix the spiraling cost of health care, it will have such a destructive impact on our economy that every sector of the economy will deteriorate,” Gerstner said in an interview last month with Bloomberg Television’s “Conversations with Judy Woodruff.”Health-care spending will account for 20 percent of U.S. gross domestic product in 2018, or $1 in $5 spent, compared with 16 percent of GDP, $1 of $6 spent, in 2008.
Now if they can just explain how another layer of government bureaucracy to the multiple layers already in place, that are already driving up costs, will lead to reduced costs. (other than the reduced Social Security roles due to shorter life expectancy)
Post a Comment