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By the Numbers: America’s Healthcare Crisis

The numbers don’t lie, America’s healthcare crisis is a threat to our nation’s ability to compete in a global market and to the wellbeing of our people.

  • Healthcare expenses have grown from 7.2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 1970 to 16.2% of GDP in 2005.  At the current rate healthcare spending will balloon to 22.5% of GDP by 2015, thus crippling U.S. competitiveness in the global economy. Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Office of the Actuary

  • At 16.2% of GDP the United States spends more on healthcare than Germany, France, Canada and the United Kingdom, but has a higher child mortality rate and shorter life expectancy rate than those same countries. Source: WHO - Working Together for Health, The World Health Report 2006

  • Today total U.S. healthcare spending is more than $2 trillion, with healthcare expenses growing at 3.6 times the rate of the Consumer Price Index for the past 35 years. Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Revolution Health

  • In 1997 health care costs represented approximately 48% of net income for the average Fortune 500 company.  In 2005 health care costs and net income were virtually even.  In 2008 the average Fortune 500 company will have a healthcare bill that exceeds its net income.

  • Everybody pays a “hidden tax” to insure the uninsured.  It is estimated that the average family pays more than $1,100 a year through health insurance premiums to cover the uninsured.

  • Nearly 75% of all healthcare costs are attributed to the big four diseases – cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity. These account for nearly $1.5 trillion in costs annually.  Through prevention these costs could be reduced significantly and help fund a new health care system and the poor/uninsured.
© 2008 CAHR