Massachusetts Health Care Spending Rises

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Despite efforts to curb health care costs in Massachusetts, health care spending is on the rise. A new report from the state's Center on Health Information and Analysis shows Massachusetts spent $632 million more on health care last year than it was supposed to, hitting a total of $54 billion. That's double the rate of growth for the previous year.

What happened, and can the numbers be brought under control?


Stuart Altman, board chairman of the Massachusetts Health Policy Commission, which tweets @Mass_HPC, and a professor of National Health Policy at Brandeis University's Heller School for Social Policy and Management, which tweets @TheHellerSchool.


CommonHealth: Mass. 2014 Health Care Spending Rises Faster Than State Goal

  • "The big jump was at MassHealth, which saw spending rise $2.4 billion, or 19 percent. The government insurance plan for low- and moderate-income residents added 379,000 members."

Massachusetts Center for Health Information and Analysis: Annual Report On The Performance Of The Massachusetts Health Care System: 2015

  • "In 2014, Total Health Care Expenditures (THCE) in Massachusetts grew 4.8% from the prior year to $8,010 per resident ($54 billion statewide). This growth rate exceeded the target benchmark set by the Health Policy Commission (+3.6%), and reflected faster growth than projected national health care expenditures per capita, state inflation, and the Massachusetts economy."

Massachusetts Health Policy Commission: Statement From Dr. Stuart Altman, Chair

  • "The bottom line is we need to know more about why and where costs are increasing, especially in MassHealth, which experienced significant growth in both spending and enrollment, and in prescription drug spending, which grew at double-digit rates across the board."

This segment aired on September 2, 2015.


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