Let me know when to start panicking about health care spending again

For some time, we’ve seen a slowdown in health care spending. Some argued that this was due to the ACA. Others thought it was the slowed-down economy. I’ve been one of the people happy to say “I don’t know”. Regardless, per Jonathan Cohn, things are looking bad again:

Now the respite may be ending. You can see it in the latest monthly reports from the Altarum Institute, an Ann Arbor-based think-tank that monitors national health care spending. These reports, based on government data, are the equivalent of an early warning system for medical costs. They are one of the first places a spending spike would show up. According to Altarum, expenditures started to rise more quickly in the middle of 2013. Since then, the rate has gone up even more. 

He also has a chart to ruin your day:

altarum_cost_graph

As always, past performance is not a guarantee of future results. But we’ve all benefited from reduced spending growth in the last few years. If that changes, things could get messy fast.

Read Jon’s whole piece.

@aaronecarroll

 

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