spending on health care in the United States grew by 7.9% in 2004 and
now accounts for 16% of the gross domestic product, says the National
Health Statistics Group of the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid
Services. Total health spending in
the US in 2004 was $6280 per person, or a total for the population of
nearly 300 million of around $1.9 trillion. The increase is
largely due to new medical treatments, rising prices, and greater use
of services, the report says. "Medical spending continues to rise
faster than wages and faster than economic growth, and workers are
paying much more in health care premiums than just a few years ago," it
says. Other industrialized countries spend about 8% of their gross
domestic product on health.
Source: BMJ. 2006; 332: 198.