home
RSS
Health care costs to surpass total income?
March 14th, 2012
03:13 PM ET

Health care costs to surpass total income?

Take a close look at the chart up above. It’s taken from a new paper, in the Annals of Family Medicine. If you believe the doctors who put it together, it tells one of the scariest stories you’ll ever hear.

The gentle upward slope represents the median income for an American family, projected through 2035. The lighter colored curve is projected average spending on health care - insurance premiums, and out of pocket costs.

With current trends, the authors say, in less than 20 years the average family will face medical costs that are higher than their total income. All of it.

Dr. Jennifer DeVoe, one of the authors, says she already sees the strain in her practice at the Oregon Health Sciences University in Portland.

“I see people who don’t eat, or don’t pay rent, so they can pay medical bills,” she says. “They can’t afford their medication, or in some cases, even a mammogram.”

The basic facts aren’t new. Health care costs have been growing faster than inflation since the government began to track them in the 1960s. Between 2000 and 2009, the paper says, the average annual increase in insurance premiums was 8%, while household income rose an average of 2.1%.

But some experts say the doom and gloom is overblown. J.D. Kleinke, who last month wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed titled “The Myth of Runaway Spending,” points out that growth in health spending has been moving closer to the overall inflation rate, for the past decade.  He says the slowdown came because insurers and private companies introduced plans with higher deductibles and bigger co-pays at the same time the government introduced health savings accounts, where individuals can get a tax break to help pay for medical expenses.

“In the old days, people never questioned cost because they were basically given a blank check,” says Kleinke. “Industry figured it out and said, 'This is madness.' ”

DeVoe acknowledges the trend, but says what strikes her first, “is that these costs are still increasing.”

Whether you see health spending as a crisis, depends, in part, on your focus.

In 2009 and 2010, total spending on health care grew at a slower rate – 3.8% and 3.9%, respectively – than at any time on record. But even that outstripped inflation –  1.6% in 2010, and a negative 0.3% the year before.

At the same time, a larger share of the cost is being borne by individual families. According to a survey last year by the Kaiser Family Foundation, premiums for family health insurance plans rose 9%.

To Kleinke, a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, shifting the burden is good and necessary.

“Because people feel the economic pain directly, they’ve actually changed behavior, and spending did start to come down.”

A wild card in all this is the Affordable Care Act, often called “Obamacare.” Critics say expanding health insurance to cover another 30 million people will send costs through the roof. But ACA supporters point to provisions meant to slow or reverse the growth in spending - especially an emphasis on preventive care, which is supposed to reduce the need for expensive hospitalizations and emergency room visits.

DeVoe says the ACA is a “great first step, but it’s not enough to get us where we need to go in terms of sustainability.”

Co-author Dr. Richard Young, who runs the country’s largest family practice training program, at John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth, Texas, points out that the new federal “comparative effectiveness” program - meant to compare the benefits of different treatments - is explicitly forbidden from considering cost, just as Medicare is forbidden from denying any “medically necessary” treatment, no matter how high the cost, or how small the medical benefit.

Young put it bluntly in an interview: “Until we’re willing to say 'no' to somebody, anybody, there is nothing to stop this inflationary pressure.”

Asked if the analysis isn’t deeply pessimistic, he said: “That’s right.”


soundoff (264 Responses)
  1. Sunny Fischbach

    EARN FREE PRODUCTS YOU USE EVERY DAY!

    http://ralphlouiscoleman.com

    January 2, 2021 at 07:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Jennell Steitzer

    Interested in more information. How can I contact you?

    http://bit.ly/3hFz4mB

    January 3, 2021 at 21:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Siu Tardiff

    Thanks so much the information. I love sucking dick btw hmu

    https://chrok1.blogspot.com/2021/01/5.html

    January 5, 2021 at 16:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. vreyro linomit

    I appreciate, cause I found exactly what I was looking for. You have ended my 4 day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a nice day. Bye

    http://www.vreyrolinomit.com/

    January 6, 2021 at 02:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Hairstyles Women

    I am so happy to read this. This is the kind of manual that needs to be given and not the random misinformation that is at the other blogs. Appreciate your sharing this best doc.

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    January 6, 2021 at 21:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Best Hairstyles

    This is really interesting, You're a very skilled blogger. I have joined your feed and look forward to seeking more of your fantastic post. Also, I have shared your web site in my social networks!

    https://www.hairstylesvip.com

    January 6, 2021 at 23:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Jessie Macia

    Fantastic beat ! I would like to apprentice whilst you amend your site, how could i subscribe for a blog website? The account aided me a applicable deal. I have been a little bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered shiny transparent idea

    https://dreamproxies.com/buy-proxies/400-private-proxies

    January 7, 2021 at 18:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Jess Dowler

    Dead written subject matter, Really enjoyed examining .

    http://yourmatrixcashmachine.com

    January 11, 2021 at 23:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Ezequiel Gantz

    Hey, you used to write fantastic, but the last few posts have been kinda boring¡K I miss your great writings. Past few posts are just a bit out of track! come on!

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    January 15, 2021 at 21:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Jannie Michetti

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    January 16, 2021 at 00:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Josh Chatten

    I would like to thank you for the efforts you've put in writing this blog. I'm hoping the same high-grade website post from you in the upcoming as well. In fact your creative writing skills has encouraged me to get my own blog now. Really the blogging is spreading its wings quickly. Your write up is a good example of it.

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    January 21, 2021 at 03:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Elliott Wilke

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    January 21, 2021 at 06:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Aaron Nickey

    Best Marketing Services – Cheapest on Market. SMM Supreme is the Top 5 Best Social Media Website in the World. Best Quality-Price Ratio on the market with 714,928 orders until now. – Facebook Fan Page Likes for $4.50/1000 – Instagram Followers for $0.78/1000 – Youtube Views: $1.62/1000 – Twitter followers: $2.10/1000 – Paypal Deposit – Bitcoin Deposit – Fast order processing – 1 Hour Delivery (Click on the link in the profile for more details)

    https://bit.ly/3iYGuRO

    January 22, 2021 at 22:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Tarra Philbin

    Do you want get more social network traffic, likes, subscribers? Our Company provide SMM Services that means (Social Media Marketing) that is directly using social network websites such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to promote a website. High Quality Services / Our prices are the cheapest in the market, starting at $0.01 / 24/7 Support / API Support for panel leaders / Best prices

    https://bit.ly/3iYGuRO

    January 26, 2021 at 17:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Tinder dating site

    what is tinder , tinder website https://tinderdatingsiteus.com/

    January 26, 2021 at 17:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Judi Eskuchen

    http://bit.ly/2KUk7RO

    http://bit.ly/2YjythK

    January 27, 2021 at 07:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Garrett Raimann

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    January 28, 2021 at 22:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. catholic dating for free

    free dating sites http://freedatingsiteall.com

    January 31, 2021 at 20:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. BonusLikes Instagram Video Likes

    some truly prize content on this site, saved to favorites.

    https://bonuslikes.com/tag/facebook-page-likes/

    February 3, 2021 at 06:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Bradford Vopava

    Earn 1000 a Day With Our Passive Income System

    https://smmsupreme.com/

    February 5, 2021 at 20:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Glory Pinner

    Are You Struggling to Lose Weight and Keep it Off ?

    http://bit.ly/3pVeOAR

    February 6, 2021 at 06:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. xemkqxs.com

    Thanks for the good writeup. It in fact was once a leisure account it. Look advanced to far brought agreeable from you! By the way, how could we be in contact?|

    https://xemkqxs.com

    February 6, 2021 at 11:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Mohamed Caruthers

    http://plans7.com

    http://plans7.com

    February 7, 2021 at 23:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. https://thuocladientu123.com

    Best view i have ever seen !

    https://www.google.cm/url?q=https://thuocladientu123.com

    February 8, 2021 at 22:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. https://thuocladientu123.com

    Best view i have ever seen !

    https://maps.google.cz/url?q=https://thuocladientu123.com

    February 9, 2021 at 01:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Timika Lutrick

    LOSE WEIGHT & MAKE MONEYWith the World’s HEALTHIEST COFFEE! http://lose77.com

    http://lose77.com

    February 13, 2021 at 06:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Joana Rickford

    https://truehealthreport.com/okinawa-flat-belly-tonic-reviews/

    https://truehealthreport.com/okinawa-flat-belly-tonic-reviews/

    February 16, 2021 at 12:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Proxies Private

    I dugg some of you post as I cogitated they were invaluable very helpful

    https://dreamproxies.com/proxy-tag/usa-europe-1000-private-proxies/

    February 16, 2021 at 13:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. 500000Scrapebox CommentBacklinks

    Create a profitable digital marketing strategy and plan: https://www.seoclerk.com/Virtual-Assistant/840836/I-will-create-a-profitable-digital-marketing-strategy-and-plan

    https://www.seoclerk.com/Link-Building/836800/High-DA-PA-50-Do-follow-Forum-Backlinks

    February 16, 2021 at 21:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. SocialMedia Services2021

    Best Marketing Services – Cheapest on Market. SMM Supreme is the Top 5 Best Social Media Website in the World. Best Quality-Price Ratio on the market with 714,928 orders until now. – Facebook Fan Page Likes for $4.50/1000 – Instagram Followers for $0.78/1000 – Youtube Views: $1.62/1000 – Twitter followers: $2.10/1000 – Paypal Deposit – Bitcoin Deposit – Fast order processing – 1 Hour Delivery Our Website: https://smmsupreme.com/services

    https://bit.ly/3iYGuRO

    February 19, 2021 at 13:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. zortilo nrel

    Hello, you used to write fantastic, but the last few posts have been kinda boring?K I miss your tremendous writings. Past several posts are just a little bit out of track! come on!

    http://www.zortilonrel.com/

    February 22, 2021 at 19:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. healthcare marketing companies

    Healthcare marketing strategy is used to support the practices of in-person healthcare providers and telemedicine providers. Healthcare marketing strategy can take many different forms and span multiple channels to target the right patients at the right time and in the right way.

    https://cli.re/telhea6811722121

    February 23, 2021 at 01:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. zortilo nrel

    I am always invstigating online for tips that can facilitate me. Thanks!

    http://www.zortilonrel.com/

    February 25, 2021 at 03:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. vreyrolinomit

    Your style is so unique compared to many other people. Thank you for publishing when you have the opportunity,Guess I will just make this bookmarked.2

    http://www.vreyrolinomit.com/

    February 26, 2021 at 04:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. vreyro linomit

    Thank you, I have recently been searching for info about this subject for a long time and yours is the greatest I have came upon so far. However, what about the bottom line? Are you positive about the supply?

    http://www.vreyrolinomit.com/

    February 26, 2021 at 14:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. ClarkTauts

    9yj9y lg52f hvla

    February 28, 2021 at 12:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Tess Sittner

    Music began playing anytime I opened up this web page, so annoying!

    https://Proxyti.com/buy/2000-private-proxies/

    March 1, 2021 at 07:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. سایت بت فوروارد

    979642 478201You need to take part in a contest for among the very best blogs on the internet. I will suggest this web internet site! 189237

    March 2, 2021 at 14:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Porfirio Bohr

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    March 6, 2021 at 14:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Lorri Suydam

    Amazon Best Sellers in Audible Books & Originals

    https://audiobooklists.blogspot.com

    March 9, 2021 at 04:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Vi Ziemba

    Cash Business Loans and Lines of Credit from $5k-$10 Million

    http://cashbusinessloans.com

    March 10, 2021 at 05:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Cary Whatoname

    The Best Health Plans and Nutritional Products Online

    http://plans7.com

    March 27, 2021 at 05:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. what is pan sexual orientation

    954558 105708As soon as I located this web internet site I went on reddit to share some with the enjoy with them. 772672

    March 31, 2021 at 14:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Antone Ashland

    You've made some good points there. I looked on the net for more information about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this website.

    https://extraproxies.com/tag/logar/

    April 5, 2021 at 21:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Mitchel Rones

    Good post. I definitely appreciate this site. Keep writing!

    https://ExtraProxies.com

    April 6, 2021 at 17:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Casey Schappert

    SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE!

    https://bit.ly/3cIqdzF

    April 12, 2021 at 05:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. rolex replika

    355627 982343Hello, Neat post. Theres an issue together together with your website in internet explorer, may check this? IE nonetheless may be the marketplace leader and a huge component to folks will omit your fantastic writing because of this difficulty. 60

    April 14, 2021 at 13:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. zithromax without prescription

    z pack indications https://zithromaxes.com/ z pack indications

    April 15, 2021 at 22:26 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3

Post a comment


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.