Who’s going broke? Comparing growth in Public healthcare expenditure in Ten OECD Countries
Government healthcare expenditures have been growing much more rapidly than GDP in OECD countries. How much of this growth is due to demographic change versus increases in benefit levels (expenditures per person at a given age)? This paper answers this question for ten OECD countries –Australia, Austria, Canada, Germany, Japan, Norway, Spain, Sweden, the UK, and the U.S. using data from 1970-2002. Growth in benefit levels explains 89 of overall healthcare spending growth in the ten countries over the period, with Norway, Spain, and the U.S. recording the highest annual benefit growth rates. As we show, allowing government healthcare benefit levels to grow at historic rates is fraught with danger given the impending retirement of the baby boom generation.
Volume (Year): 188 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
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