Study shows Americans spend twice as much on healthcare as other nations

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Photo by Daan Stevens on Unsplash

Making hard choices because of the skyrocketing costs of health care costs is hitting Americans hard.

Ellen Boucher is on social security and right now she’s fighting to get the medicine she needs to stay healthy, “It’s too bad that we can’t afford to get new tires on the car.”

Boucher lives in Cape Coral and is fed up with the cost of healthcare in America, painting a grim picture of the effects of high costs, saying, “People go bankrupt, and I think people commit suicide. It becomes so perilous.”

Those increasing costs are putting pressure on families across the country.

A new study by Harvard Global Health Institute and the London School of Economics shows in 2016, we spent nearly twice as much as 10 high-income countries like the United Kingdom, Germany and Canada.

However, we have the shortest life expectancy and highest infant and mother mortality rates.

“It’s become a big problem, and it’s unsustainable at this point,” said Wilcox Family Insurance Agent Mark Wilcox, “Health care providers are charging more; pharmaceuticals, hospitals, facilities are charging more. That’s what’s causing these rates to go up.”

And the study found that the major drivers behind those costs are pharmaceuticals and doctors’ salaries. That puts a burden on patients like Boucher, who are trying to make the most of the years they have left.

“I plan on living quite a few more years. I’ve worked hard all my life. I’ve saved for retirement. It’s going away very fast,” Boucher said.W

Healthcare costs are projected to continue to increase.

Wilcox says to talk with an agent about getting the best, most affordable plan for you. He also says when more people sign up for health insurance there’s more competition in the insurance marketplace, which could help bring costs down.

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