Cost of healthcare is what everyone everywhere is talking about. Trying to figure out the best structure and delivery for healthcare in order to make costs more affordable is the goal. A recent study by the OECD shows that the country's healthcare status can actually have a huge impact on rising costs.
The OECD found that obesity is a major contributing factor to the healthcare status in the U.S. OECD predicts that in 2020, 75 percent of Americans will be obese. Medicare costs are rising faster than most because the number of obese seniors is significant.
It's not just obesity that is the problem is it the conditions associated with it such as, high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes. According to a study conducted Medicare is spending more money each year per obese person, $149 more. In a 2009 study, it was found that obesity related diseases account for one out of every 10 dollars spent on healthcare which comes out to about $147 million total.
Another example of healthcare status affecting healthcare costs was shown in a study by the National Institute for Health Care Reform. They analyzed the healthcare spending by American autoworkers from Chrysler, General Motors and Ford.
These companies provide healthcare benefits to over 1 million people, all with access to the same healthcare benefits. The high-spending areas showed workers in worse health than those with lower-spending. This resulted in 37 percent of the variation in spending.
Another third of the spending variation had to do with how much providers charge for the same service. All of these factors and more are making it impossible to pinpoint the perfect solution.