The Affordable Care Act (ACA) whose primary goal is make healthcare more affordable and decrease costs increased 5.3% in 2014. This is the largest increase since 2007. While physician and hospital charges increased modestly, pharmaceutical spending increased dramatically at over 12%. But spending from Medicaid increased also by 11% primarily through increased enrollment.
The U.S. healthcare tab topped $3.03 trillion in 2014, up 5.3% from 2013, according to figures from the Office of the Actuary, an independent arm of the CMS. The data, published Wednesday in Health Affairs, differ only slightly from the projections released this past July. The amount spent on each person averaged $9,523 last year, an increase of 4.5% year over year. Healthcare represented 17.5% of the nation’s gross domestic product in 2014, up from 17.3% in 2013.The 5.3% annual growth rate was the highest since before the 2008 recession. More recently, the U.S. healthcare system recorded historically low growth in expenditures. Many observers believe the recession was a primary driver because the high rates of unemployment battered demand for healthcare services.