Report predicts moderate health care spending rise

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A new report says U.S. health care spending will continue climbing at a more moderate pace next year, which may help contain hikes in the price of employer-sponsored insurance.

PwC’s Health Research Institute says the cost to deliver health care will climb 7.5 percent per person in 2013. That counts spending on everything from doctor visits to prescription drugs or surgeries. The growth falls short of 10 percent annual rate seen before the recession reined in consumer spending.

 

PwC says the slower growth rate reflects the sluggish economy, lower use of services and efforts by employers to contain costs.

 

Employers consider spending forecasts when they start thinking about pricing health care coverage for the new year. Coverage costs also depend on the company’s size and the health of its employees.