As a follow up to December’s post (The Bias Against Preventative Healthcare), some alarming new statistics have been released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Spending on healthcare is consuming an enormous and accelerated portion of our economy. In 2009 U.S. health care spending rose to an unprecedented $2.5 trillion and is projected to double by 2019. At 17% of GDP, these 2009 numbers represent the largest single year increase recorded.
It may help to provide some context regarding healthcare spending as a percent of GDP. Yes, the United States (#1 at 17%) leads that category among all nations, as the weighted average is about 8%. Other industrialized nations include France (#13 at 9.7%), Canada (#15 at 9.6%), Japan (#43 at 7.9%), UK (#47 at 7.7%), Russia (#79 at 6.2%) and Singapore (#145 at 4.3%).
So as we listen to all the reasons why our healthcare system is the best in the world and should not be changed, the real question to ask your self is why. Why are these politicians and lobbyists defending a system that is….well, killing us? Maybe it’s because they are all riding on this gravy train. Like they say, follow the money!