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Hca/210 - Wk 7 - Rising Cost of Health Care Costs

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The Driving Forces behind Rising Health Care Costs
Leslie Parvin
HCA/210
August 23, 2013
Jon Lasell

The Driving Forces behind Rising Health Care Costs Even though some experts disagree the high cost of health care is not a serious problem, the high and rising costs are a major issue, because of the high cost of new technologies and the aging population. Furthermore, the most expensive health care system in the world is right here in the United States, with the per capita health expenditures far above those in any other countries. However, to help the sky rocketing costs of health care, insurance companies came out with plans like HMO’s to help manage care organizations that provide comprehensive health care services for a predetermined annual fee per each person enrolled. The rising health care costs have become a huge concern for almost everyone, including the general public, federal and state governments, and employers who purchase health care for their employees. Hence, there are several reasons to explain the high and rising costs of health care. According to Bodenheimer (2005), he stated, “High health care costs might derive from factors outside the health sector rather than from characteristics of the health care system itself” (p. 849). One of these factors outside the health sector is the rising costs of health care for the aging population. According to the Pew Research Center (2010), as of January 1, 2011 approximately 10,000 Baby Boomers, who are the generation born between 1946 and 1964, will turn 65 every day for the next 19 years. Moreover, the high cost of technologic advances, in combination with poor cost-containment measures, is another factor in the high rise of health care costs. Because the use of new technologies is fairly unrestrained in the United States, the nation incurs higher health care costs (Bodenheimer, 2005, p. 932). HMOs can have a significant effect on the rising cost of health care. The website HMO Health Insurance website (2013) states, "HMO health insurance, or Health Maintenance Organization, is a network of doctors, hospitals, health care providers, and pharmacies that offer medical treatment at a reduced cost to members" (para. 2). More important, each provider that is part of the network work together to manage the cost and quality of the health care provided to its members. In fact, one of the several advantages to having an HMO plan is that members are able to enjoy low out-of-pocket costs in comparison to expensive, traditional health insurance plans. In conclusion, although some experts disagree that the high cost of health care is not a serious problem, the rising costs is a major issue for two main reasons. First, the high cost of health care for the aging population that will only grow through the next few decades. However, the most important is the high cost of technologies. Therefore, with the creation of HMO's to help reduce the high cost of health care, some progress has been made towards reducing the ever rising costs of health care in the United States.

References
Bodenheimer, T. (2005). High and rising care costs. Part 1: Seeking an explanation. Ann Intern Med. 2005;142(10):847-854. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-142-10-200505170-00010
Bodenheimer, T. (2005). High and rising care costs. Part 2: Technologic Innovation. Ann Intern Med. 2005;142(11):932-937. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-142-11-200506070-00012.
HMOHealthInsurance.org. (2013). Questions you may have about HMO health insurance. Retrieved from http://www.hmohealthinsurance.org
Pew Research Center. (2010, December 29). Baby boomers retire. Retrieved from http://www.pewresearch.org/daily-number/baby-boomers-retire/…...

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