Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: May 28, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963930 | Print ISBN: 9781412941655 | Online ISBN: 9781412963930 | Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Health Care, Costs
Officials measure health care costs in two major ways: total expenditures and per person (or per capita) spending. They report total expenditures either in dollars or as a percentage of the gross domestic product (GDP), or else as a growth rate percentage compared with the growth rate percentage of the GDP. Reports on per capita spending are often in dollars, in terms of total medical costs or total out-of-pocket costs, or as a percentage of individual income. A final means of measurement is the share of individual spending paid out-of-pocket. Total expenditures and per capita health costs can also be projected. Total expenditures are growing at an alarming rate. In 2003, they were $1.7 trillion, with government projections to grow to $2.16 trillion in 2006 and over $4 trillion by 2015. Total health spending as a percentage of the GDP grew from 7.2 percent in 1965 to 16.2 percent in ...