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Per Capita Healthcare Spending Grows 4.6%, Driven by Price Hikes

Healthcare spending for people with employer-based insurance rose 4.6 percent in 2011, a significant step up from the 3.8 percent growth rate in 2010, according to a report from the Health Care Cost Institute (pdf).

The total amount of healthcare spending per person with job-based health coverage equaled $4,547. Similar to HCCI's 2010 Health Care Cost and Utilization Report, the 2011 report looked at the prices, utilization and spending of people younger than 65 covered by employer-sponsored private health insurance. HCCI reviewed claims for 40 million people, 7 million more than the 2010 report.

Here are some of HCCI's other main findings:

•    In 2011, healthcare spending for children increased 7.7 percent from 2010 to a total of $2,347 — the highest growth rate of any age group.

•    Per capita out-of-pocket spending totaled $735 per person on average, which also was a 4.6 percent increase from 2010.

•    The average facility price for an inpatient surgical admission for someone with employer-based insurance rose 8.5 percent to $29,858. The average price for an inpatient hospital admission was $15,674, an increase of 5.3 percent from 2010.

•    Spending on outpatient facility services grew 6.8 percent, the fastest of any service category in 2011.

According to HCCI, this data "suggests that 2011 is a potential transition year and that the growth in healthcare spending in 2012 needs to be closely watched."

More Articles on Healthcare Spending:

3 Lessons From Massachusetts' Healthcare Reform

New Mass. Law Looks to Curb Healthcare Spending

California Surgery Prices Vary Vastly by Area

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