Our Bloated Healthcare System

Andrew Sullivan —  Oct 10 2011 @ 9:54am

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Noah Millman compares per-capita healthcare spending in the US to other industrialized countries:

The problem is not primarily the high growth rate of our health-care spending; the problem is precisely the high level of our health-care spending. Which in turn means that a growth rate that looks reasonable when compared internationally is unsustainable in terms of the bite it takes out of the domestic economy.

The only solutions he sees:

– Either we have to grow nominal GDP much more rapidly than other developed countries while holding health-care cost inflation down to levels comparable to other developed countries.

– Or we have to slow health-care cost growth to rates much lower than those achieved by our peer countries, and keep those growth rates low for an extended period, without, in the process, sacrificing growth in nominal GDP.

– Or we have to take a one-time axe to health-care costs in some fashion so that we can, from that point, grow from a more manageable base.

Chart from Data Collective.