New Charts Track Growth in U.S. Health Care Prices, Draw Comparisons to Other Countries
By Kaiser Family Foundation, Published: May 09, 2018
Two new chart collections from the Kaiser Family Foundation combine original analysis with a synthesis of existing data to examine trends in health care prices and utilization and compare health spending in the United States with that of other wealthy countries.
How have health care prices grown in the U.S. over time? This chart collection explores price increases in private insurance for common services over time and finds significant geographic variation in prices. For example, the average price of a full knee replacement for those in large employer plans increased from $19,595 in 2003 to $34,063 in 2016, growth of 74% compared to a 28% increase in general inflation. The average price of a knee replacement in New York City is more than twice the price of the same procedure in the Louisville, Kentucky area. Prices paid by private insurance for inpatient hospital care are substantially higher than those paid by Medicare and Medicaid, with the gap growing over time.