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  • Palliative care is one of the fastest growing areas in health care, with three times as many hospitals providing palliative services today as did just 15 years ago.

  • Annual spending for cancer treatment in the U.S. is set to reach $184 billion by 2020. The large and growing bill has raised concerns that fee-for-service payments for oncology are promoting over-treatment and use of more expensive drugs irrespective of patient benefit. 

  • This health policy briefing on Capitol Hill will bring together top health care leaders with diverse business and policy expertise to share their unique perspectives as key players in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, market leaders driving change, and policy experts with alternative ideas for the future of health care.

  • Drug abuse during pregnancy is a growing problem, evidenced by the three-fold increase in newborns diagnosed with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) between 2000 and 2009. Infants with NAS can suffer violent withdrawal symptoms that result in traumatic and costly NICU stays.

  • NIHCM Foundation seeks a highly motivated individual to join our team as a research and policy analyst. The research and policy analyst would support the Foundation’s work to foster public-private collaboration to improve the U.S. health system.

  • With the epidemic of prescription painkiller abuse and related increase in heroin dependence, the health system is facing an alarming rise in neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS). NAS afflicts newborns exposed to drugs, most commonly opioids, while in utero.

NIHCM

The Concentration of Health Care Spending

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July 2012

Spending for health care in the U.S. is highly concentrated among a small subset of Americans. Just 5 percent of the population accounted for nearly half of all health care spending in 2009. Understanding these high-spenders is vital for developing strategies to reduce overall spending growth. In this data brief you will learn more about:

  • the characteristics and health conditions of the highest spenders,
  • the persistence of high spending patterns over time,
  • the challenges in targeting the most expensive cases for better care management, and
  • the implications of concentrated spending for risk-based payment and insurance market reforms.

This is the third in a series of NIHCM data briefs on U.S. health care spending.

Chart images:

Please feel free to use the charts from this brief with attribution to NIHCM Foundation in your slide presentations, blog posts, reports, etc. Click on the images below to download the full-scale .png files.

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