The Costly One Percent

A recently released report by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, detailed medical care expenses are highly concentrated among a relatively small proportion of individuals in the United States.

The report explains:

  • The costliest one percent of patients account for 21 percent of U.S. health spending;

  • Five percent of patients accounted for 50 percent of all healthcare expenditures; and

  • The bottom 50 percent of patients accounted for just 2.8 percent of spending in 2010.

The report also explored how costly it is for the system to treat patients with chronic diseases.  In this recent post we referenced the following data from the Centers for Disease Control:

  • Three out of every four dollars spent on healthcare in the United States are used to treat patients with chronic diseases; and

  • Seven out of every ten deaths are a result of chronic disease.