CMS Actuarial Report: Twerking the Data

Leah Binder a Contributor at Forbes shares her deep dive into the most recent CMS actuaries report “5 Hollywood Moments in The Latest US Health Care Spending Numbers”. She unfolds the data and finds some surprising bits and pieces. 

The overview: 
From 2009 to 2012 healthcare spending in the US grew at its slowest rate since the 1960’s. In 2012 spending stabilized by growing at 3.7% and accounted for a smaller percent of GDP 17.2% in 2012 vs. 17.3% in 2011

  • The actuaries from CMS attributed this stabilization in cost was due to economic recovery
  • The growth of high deductible health plans were a stabilizing factor with deductibles being as high as $1,000 which covers 1 in 5 workers.
  • Health plan administrative fees are down and the growth pharma costs grew surprisingly little. At the same time hospital services grew 4.9% and physician services grew 4.6%. (Binder wonders out loud if these two groups are doing more services: volume over costs)
  • States are being hit with increased Medicaid spending
  • The single biggest payer of US healthcare spending are you and I. Spending by you and I account for 28% of the $2.3 trillion healthcare sector.

This is straight from the horses mouth and though it is a snapshot i may point to some positive tends as well the negative ones. Where will next few years data point?

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