How Much Does Health Care Spending Really Cost?

One of the things that gets lost in political debates about spending is the context in which the spending takes place. IE how much a policy or program will “really” cost the American people versus how much its projected to cost taxpayers.

Let’s think about it on the small scale. If I told you that your electric bill was $12,000 you’d probably “freak the fuck out”. And rightfully so. Sure electricity might be a necessary aspect of your day to day life but $12,000? Fuck that noise.

On the other hand, if you read the fine print at the bottom of your bill that informed you that this $12,000 was stretched out over a ten year period you’d probably feel a lot better.

Why? Do the math.

$12,000/10 years = $1,200 a year
$1,200/12 months = $100 a month.

$100 a month is substantially less than $12,000.

Now let’s look at the Senate health care bill. According to the CBO, HCR will cost approx $875 billion. Oh no! That’s almost a trillion dollars!!!

Shock, gasps, and everything in between.

But take a step back and remember that this is $875 billion over a ten year span.. Meaning that the annual cost of health care reform is a mere $87 billion a year. While $87 billion is a huge number relative to your personal bank account, its more or less chump change in terms of federal spending. And after you take into account the savings from eliminating the $42.7 billion “Hidden tax” we pay every year for the uninsured, the Senate Health Care Bill drops in cost to $45 billion a year.

$45 billion a year for almost 100% universal coverage? Doesn’t sound too bad to me.

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One thought on “How Much Does Health Care Spending Really Cost?

  1. Pingback: Health Care In Context: Your World In Charts « Cognitive Dissonance

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