Total health care spending reached 17.4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2013, and that share is expected to continue to grow significantly, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Given this trend, it is critical to develop an understanding of what those increased expenditures represent. Are the increases attributable to rising costs of treatment or more individuals receiving medical care? What medical conditions account for the majority of spending? Which medical conditions see the cost of treatment rising most rapidly? Do these spending increases coincide with improvements in treatment? Answers to these questions are necessary in order to formulate policies that allow for society’s efficient consumption of health care as well as for the improvement of the nation’s overall health status.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) has been conducting research to develop a health care satellite account (HCSA)—engaging in methodological research, evaluating new data sources, collaborating with academic researchers, and working jointly across multiple federal agencies (see the SURVEY OF CURRENT BUSINESS articles (2007),(2008),(2009),(2012),(2013)). The account builds on research by prominent health economists, recommendations from two reports of the National Academy of Sciences’ Committee on National Statistics, and years of research both at BEA and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
This first release of the HCSA presents preliminary estimates that may be used to improve our understanding of health care spending trends and its effects on the U.S. economy.
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New statistics tracking the changes in the prices to treat different diseases are slated to be available Thursday, Jan. 22 when the Bureau of Economic Analysis publishes a new health care satellite account report.
The statistics – the first of their kind – provide information about the changes in prices to treat different diseases – illustrating trends in prices over time. The statistics cover 2000-2010 and will be contained in a report published in the January Survey of Current Business. Another new set of annual statistics that track how much is spent to treat different diseases over that same 10-year period also will be released. These new statistics are derived from large medical claims databases that include millions of individuals and billions of claims.
BEA’s new detailed, health care statistics will provide businesses, households and policymakers with even more data to make informed decisions.
These new health care statistics emerge from a multiyear project to improve the way health care spending is measured throughout the U.S. economy. Health care spending is an important part of the U.S. economy, accounting for 17.4 percent of Gross Domestic Product in 2013, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Nominal value added from all arts and cultural production (ACP) industries- a measure of this sector’s contribution to gross domestic product (GDP) – increased 3.8 percent, or $25.8 billion in 2012, according to new statistics released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Value added for ACP accounted for 4.3 percent, or $698.7 billion, of GDP.
“With the creation of new data analyses like this one – which shows how arts and culture contribute to GDP – the Department of Commerce is providing a more detailed picture of what drives the U.S. economy, growth, and job creation,” said Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker. “Making new data available is another example of how the government is working harder and smarter to produce relevant statistics that better inform individuals, business, and decision-makers.”
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