Health care is rising rapidly. Health care spending is a serious and major issue that needs more focus and stability. In 2009, the gross domestic product (GDP) rose to 17. 6% and reached $2. 5 trillion. The United States spends thousands of dollars per person for health care. People treated and diagnosed for chronic conditions, and obesity rates are still at large. The current health expenditure for the United States is 15. 7% in Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Hospital care, physician and clinical services are responsible for half of the national health care spending increase between 2005 and 2009 (Understanding U.S.
Health Care Spending, 2011). If nobody takes action, bankruptcy may be present. Further readings will explain the level of current national health care expenditures and whether the spending is too much or not enough. Further readings will also address where the nation should add the cut; how the public’s health care needs are paid for; and the future economic needs of the health care system. Current National Health Care Expenditures In 2012, the United States spent $2. 87 trillion on health care (Management, 2013, p. 1). In 2013, the United States spent $2. 9 trillion on health care which is a 3. 8% increase.
According to Emanuel (2013), the United States spent more than the French and German economy. Health care spending is a big issue in the United States than in any other country. Five decades ago, almost all prescription drugs were paid out-of-pocket, and most people did not have coverage. Fifty years later, fewer people are paying less out-of-pocket because those individuals are receiving help from Medicare and Medicaid. Each year, the health care spending rate is growing less than 4%. “The amount the U. S. spends on health care has almost doubled since 2000 and nearly quadrupled since 1990” (Young, 2013, para.3).
Since the Obamacare coverage, healthcare increased about 6. 1% in 2014. Young (2013), states “annual health care spending will reach $2. 4 trillion or 19. 9 percent of U. S. gross domestic product” (para. 9). The health care system cost is slowly growing. Too Much or Not Enough Spending During the past 50 years, a major factor for health care in cost growth is new medical technology. “Estimates suggest that about half the annual increase in U. S. health care spending has resulted from new technology” (Hamel, 2013, p. 1). People are likely to adopt unhealthy lifestyles.
Age, smoking and obesity are other contributors to increased health care costs. Many unemployed individuals either went without health insurance or limited his or her spending. Inappropriate care may also increase health care costs. The liability system is another factor. Patients may receive too much care; prices are higher than usual, and spending is increasing by administrative costs. Studies have shown about 30% of the United States’ health care spending is wasteful (Hamel, 2013). Lawsuits may be present; fees may increase, and innovations may be slower.
“The U. S. ranks 37th among nations in terms of overall health care performance” (Cors, 2011, p. 10). The United States is spending too much on health care. Nearly twice as much is spent but providing more does not lead to better outcomes. Due to higher-spending areas, patients are at a greater risk of dying from being chronically ill. Technology also increases spending and is responsible for 38%-65% of the health care cost growth. Studies have shown increasing share costs paid by consumers prove spending on medical care decrease, but cost sharing did not affect the quality of care.
Restraining the growth of costs is not easy, while ensuring and improving quality. Efficiency of the health care delivery system needs improvement along with financial incentives to have more efficient and effective care (The Unsustainable costs of health care, 2009). The Nation Needs to Cut Spending “Reforms that simply shift federal spending to individuals, employers, and states fail to address the problem of rising health care costs—and would ultimately lead many people to forgo necessary care” (Marcus, 2012, p. 1). The United States needs to cut health care costs.
One way to control health care spending in the United States is simplifying the administrative system. In order to control the costs, the level and growth in costs need attention. The costs need to decrease for public and private payers. According to Emanuel (2012), “the United States spends nearly $360 billion a year on administrative costs; accounting for 14% of excessive health spending” (para. 21).
If payers and providers exchange administrative information electronically, use a physician credentialing system, “provide monthly explanation-of-benefits statements electronically” (para.22), and integrate billings and payments through electronic health records for 5 years, the United States may save $30 billion a year.
Other ways to cut health care costs and save money are reducing the costs of defensive medicine and prohibit physician self-referrals. Some of these examples will help control and lower costs, improve health and efficiency, and increase the quality of care. How the Public’s Health Care Needs Are paid for According to Financing Health Care (n. d. ), the health care system is market-based. Health care is provided by and paid for employers, individuals and sometimes the government.
In the United States, federal funds and the state support American citizens with Medicaid which help people who have low-income, and Medicare, supported by federal funds, which help the disabled and elderly. “As long as the set reimbursement, or capitation, for the episode of care is adequate and outcomes measures are in place, patients can get quality care tailored to meet their particular needs” (Financing Health Care, n. d. , p. 3). The World Bank shows percentages of the total health and public expenditure data from the most recent year, 2012.
According to The World Bank (2014), “public health expenditure consists of recurrent and capital spending from government budgets, external borrowings and grants, and social health insurance funds. Total health expenditure is the sum of public and private health expenditure” (p. 1). The total percentage of health expenditure for the United States is 46. 4%. The health expenditure was increasing every year but is now decreasing. Future Economic Needs of the Health Care System The most important need the future economic need is to control or cut the spending in the health care system. Health care spending is spiraling out of control and continuing to do so.
Health care spending is still a serious issue in the United States, and there should be more focus on Americans to afford health care and more on living and less on bankruptcy. Health care is a must in life, and there is no way of getting around payments for the care received. Another need needing attention in the United States is obesity. If individuals live a healthy lifestyle, the growth of medical costs will decrease dramatically.
Senior citizens over 65 years old who pay more must be addressed as well. To lower health costs, the persons who qualify for Medicare should have a health proxy and a living will. Conclusion Taking care of the future economic needs of the health care system is the United States’ priority. The United States is spending way too much on the quantity and not focusing on the quality. There was previous explanation of the level of current national health care expenditures and how the public’s health care needs are paid.
Health care needs to be affordable for all Americans to ensure a healthy lifestyle, healthy workplace, and a healthy nation. Without health care, health issues may escalate and permanently affect an individual’s way of living. References Cors, K. W. (2011, September-October). Overtreatment in Health Care: How Much Is Too Much? 10(4), 16. Retrieved from http://search. proquest. com. ezproxy. apollolibrary. com/docview/887908761? pq-origsite=summon Emanuel, E. (2012, September 6). A Systemic Approach to Containing Health Care Spending. The New England Journal of Medicine, 367(10), 949-54.
Retrieved from http://search. proquest. com. ezproxy. apollolibrary. com/docview/1041328343? pq-origsite=summon Hamel, M. (2013, December 26). Health Care Spending—A Giant Slain or Sleeping? The New England Journal of Medicine, 369(26), 2551-7. Retrieved from http://search. proquest. com. ezproxy. apollolibrary. com/docview/1470966041? pq-origsite=summon Marcus, R. (2012, August 2). Cutting Health Care Costs: Leading Experts Propose Bold Solutions. Center for American Progress. Retrieved from http://www. americanprogress. org/issues/healthcare/news/2012/08/02/11970/cutti