The Sad History of Health Care Cost Containment As Told In One Chart

According to this HealthAffairs article by Drew Altman and Larry Levitt, annual analysis of whether or not a specific approach to curb costs may or may not be flawed often overlooks a larger trend for such targeted approaches to miss the underlying systemic issues that drive health care costs upward. A brief glance at a 40-year chart that tracks the annual change in private health spending per capita clearly illustrates how many innovative approaches to health care reform over the decades have made the same short-term gains only to succumb to rebound in the following decade.

Altman, Drew and Levitt, Larry. “The Sad History of Health Care Cost Containment As Told In One Chart.” HealthAffairs 2002.