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CMS Analysis Finds Healthcare Spending in U.S. Increased 4.6% in 2019, Driven by Hospital Costs

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HealthcareDive writes an analysis from the CMS Office of the Actuary published Wednesday in Health Affairs found healthcare spending in the U.S. increased 4.6% in 2019 — on par with previous years and accounting for 17.7% of the nation’s total gross domestic product compared with 17.6% in 2018.

Spending on hospital care, physician and clinical services and retail prescription drug purchases — altogether accounting for 61% of total healthcare spending — all rose, though they were mostly offset by declines in the net cost of health insurance after the suspension of the health insurance tax, according to the report.

Among major payers, private health insurance spending grew 3.7% in 2019 compared with 5.6% in 2018, while Medicare spending grew 6.7% in 2019 compared with 6.3% in 2018. Medicaid spending remained largely unchanged.

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