What's Behind the Flatlining of US Healthcare Spending Since 2009

The spending slowdown is about more than the recession (which ended in 2009) -- it's also structural, a significant part of the slowdown can be tied to the impact of the Affordable Care Act.

Many of you have seen or heard about the new Commonwealth Fund report: "Access, Affordability, and Insurance Complexity Are Often Worse in the United States Compared to 10 Other Countries." It's a familiar song we've been hearing for years, and, according to the Fund, it's not getting better:

"A 2013 survey conducted in 11 countries finds that U.S. adults are significantly more likely than their counterparts to forgo health care because of the cost, to have difficulty paying for care even when they have insurance, and to deal with time-consuming insurance issues."

Many noteworthy aspects here. For example, if we look back at 1980, the U.S. was clearly one of the most expensive systems, perhaps the most. And, it was also in the pack of the most expensive health systems that included Germany, Switzerland and others. Only in the 1980s did we break from the pack and see our medical spending increases far outstrip those of our peer nations. Boy, did it ever!

Read the full story here:


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