Health Care Spending Grows 1.5% Faster Than Overall Economy in 2016

Out-of-pocket spending including copayments and deductibles increased by 3.9 percent

Image Credits: Keith Cooper/Flickr.

Health care spending in the United States increased by 4.3 percent in 2016, which was 1.5 percentage points faster than the economy grew as a whole, according to datafrom the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

The data finds that while the growth of health care spending in 2016 slowed compared with the 5.8 percent growth seen in 2015, out-of-pocket spending accelerated during this time.

“During 2014 and 2015, the health spending share of the economy increased 0.5 percentage point from 17.2 percent in 2013 to 17.7 percent in 2015,” the article states. “The increases in the health spending share of the economy in 2014 and 2015 were largely due to coverage expansion that contributed to 8.7 million individuals gaining private health insurance coverage and 10.2 million gaining Medicaid coverage over the period and to significant growth in retail prescription drug spending.”

According to the data, while spending on private health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid and retail prescription drugs slowed in 2016, out-of-pocket spending accelerated.

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