HC Statistics International Health Care Systems

Health Care Spending

The California HealthCare Foundation has a great document summarizing many useful Health Care Cost Statistics (see full text or fact sheet).  Some of the highlights:

  • Health Care spending as a percentage of GDP is projected to grow 16.0% of GDP in 2006 to 19.5% of GDP in 2017.
  • Average health care spending per capita was $7026 in 2006 and will grow to $7868 in 2008.
  • In 1962, Defense spending made up half of the federal budget, Social Security about 15% and Medicare had not yet been enacted.  By 2007, Defense spending is only 20% of the budget while Social Security makes up 21% and Medicare 16% and rising.
  • The U.S. has by far the highest health care spending as a percentage of GDP.  This table compares health care spending across different countries.
  • Hospitalization and Physician Services make up over 50% of health care spending.  This table gives the distribution of health care spending in the U.S. by type of service.
  • What are the drivers of the cost increases?  Price inflation and a change in the volume and mix of services provided.


  1. This is exactly the kind of information we at FAIR are trying to get out to the public. For too long, insurance companies concerns superseded patients. FAIR is an emerging national grassroots movement focused on changing the debate about health care costs and holding managed care companies responsible for their behavior. If you are interested in implementing change and working toward a FAIR reform to America’s broken health care system. Go to http://www.fairmanagedcare.org, become a member, and fight back

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