A new report from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) projects that health-care spending will increase 5.3 percent in 2018 – up nearly one percentage point from the 2017 projections. The researchers cite three primary drivers for this higher projection: an aging population that will expand the number of eligible Medicare beneficiaries, hikes in the prices for medical goods and services, and more disposable personal income.
CMS projects that health-care spending will rise, on average, 5.5 percent annually between 2017 and 2026; by 2026, health spending will comprise 19.7 percent of the U.S. economy, reaching $5.7 trillion. Prescription drugs are expected to see the fastest annual growth over the next decade, rising an average of 6.3 percent per year because of higher drug prices and increased use of specialty drugs.
The report also predicts that a slightly higher portion of the population will be uninsured in 2026.
Source: Reuters, February 14, 2018.