Image via Steve Rhodes/Flickr CC
Health care is now a huge, thorny political and economic issue, and the chart below shows one reason why.
The US spends far more on health care than other developed nations, with worse outcomes by many measures.
Yet, all that money doesn’t just disappear.
Health care is a huge industry that accounts for most of the nation’s post-recession job growth.
Source: Kaiser Health News
According to Kaiser, labor is more than half of the $3.4 trillion spent on health care.
A good part of it has little to do with patient care. For every physician, there are 16 other healthcare workers. Half of them are in roles like data entry and billing.
The spending that some of us might call “waste” partially supports someone else’s paycheck. That doesn’t make it untouchable. But eliminating healthcare jobs simply trades one problem for another if there aren’t other jobs for the affected workers.
It’s a sticky problem.
Subscribe to Connecting the Dots—and Get a Glimpse of the Future
We live in an era of rapid change… and only those who see and understand the shifting market, economic, and political trends can make wise investment decisions. Macroeconomic forecaster Patrick Watson spots the trends and spells what they mean every week in the free e-letter, Connecting the Dots. Subscribe now for his seasoned insight into the surprising forces driving global markets.