Rising Health Care Costs

1789 Words8 Pages
Consumer Behavior Contributes to Rising Health Care Costs Health Care , 2012 "It may be Americans' own habits that are driving health care costs in the United States." Raja Jagadeesan is a medical doctor and a member of the ABC News Medical Unit that reports on health affairs. In the following viewpoint, Jagadeesan cites studies that blame US health care costs partly on the bad behaviors and unhealthy vices of Americans. Jagadeesan reports how smoking and lack of exercise have made Americans less healthy than Europeans, forcing the nation to spend more per person on health care. Jagadeesan asserts that Americans could save more money on medical bills if they just took better care of their health. As you read, consider the following questions:…show more content…
The illnesses included diabetes, hypertension, arthritis, heart disease, high cholesterol, chronic lung disease, asthma, osteoporosis, stroke and cancer. Overall, the rates were significantly higher in the United States than in Europe. In most cases, Americans were also more likely to receive medications for the same medical diagnosis. The researchers also looked for potential reasons to explain why Americans have higher rates of disease than Europeans. One glaring finding from the study was that obesity and smoking were more prevalent in the United States. Thirty-three percent of Americans were obese, compared with only 17 percent of Europeans. In addition, 53 percent of Americans had smoked at some point in their lives, compared with 43 percent of Europeans. In addition, every chronic illness closely linked to obesity or smoking was more common in the United States. Lead study author Kenneth Thorpe, a professor of health policy at Emory's Rollins School of Public Health and former deputy assistant secretary of Health and Human Services, said that some of the findings were surprising. "We had some idea of what we would find," said Thorpe. "We knew that obesity and smoking rates would be higher in the U.S. But the extent of the differences, especially with some of the chronic illnesses such as hypertension, heart disease and diabetes, was higher than we anticipated."…show more content…
Davidson Still Broken: Understanding the U.S. Health Care System. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2010. Peter Ferrara The Obamacare Disaster. Chicago: Heartland Institute, 2010. David Gratzer Why Obama's Government Takeover of Health Care Will Be a Disaster. New York: Encounter, 2009. George C. Halvorson Health Care Will Not Reform Itself: A User's Guide to Refocusing and Reforming American Health Care. New York: Productivity, 2009. Regina E. Herzlinger Who Killed Health Care?: America's $2 Trillion Medical Problem—and the Consumer-Driven Cure. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2007. Lawrence R. Jacobs and Theda Skocpol Health Care Reform and American Politics: What Everyone Needs to Know. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010. Steven Jonas, Raymond Goldsteen, and Karen Goldsteen An Introduction to the U.S. Health Care System . New York: Springer, 2007. Maggie Mahar Money-Driven Medicine: The Real Reason Health Care Costs So Much. New York: Collins, 2006. David Nather The New Health Care System: Everything You Need to Know. New York: Thomas Dunne, 2010. Sally C. Pipes The Truth About Obamacare. Washington, DC: Regnery, 2010. Michael E. Porter and Elizabeth Olmsted Teisberg Redefining Health Care: Creating Value-Based Competition on Results. Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 2006. T.R. Reid The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care. New York: Penguin, 2010. Grace-Marie Turner, James C. Capretta, Thomas P. Miller, and

More about Rising Health Care Costs

Open Document