Medicine: Soaring Costs

U.S. health bill jumps 15.1%

The U.S. Government confirmed last week what everyone knew: health costs are soaring. In fact, according to the Department of Health and Human Services, the nation's health bill shot up 15.1% in 1981, outpacing the 8.9% inflation rate for the year.

Overall, medical costs, both public and private, rose to $287 billion. The sum represented a record 9.8% of the gross national product, averaging out to $1,225 for each American. The HHS report noted that the rapid increase in medical spending was caused in great part by the routine payment of two-thirds of all medical charges by...

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