This week on Insider News, we're sharing articles on why health care spending is expected to grow, Americans' relationship to health data collection tools, health care satisfaction post-Affordable Care Act (ACA), and a new program by CVS to deliver prescriptions via drone.
A report (for purchase) by Freedonia Focus Reports forecasts U.S. health care expenditures will rise 5.2% annually in nominal terms through 2023. In inflation-adjusted terms, spending is projected to rise 2.5% annually until 2023.
Freedonia expects providers of health care services and products to benefit from continued growth in consumer incomes along with a rise in the number of acute and chronic conditions, partly due to the aging population. It explains that faster gains in value terms will be limited by efforts to curb rising health costs. Among its findings:
- Hospital services are projected to remain the largest expenditure segment due to the aging population and the resulting growth in the number of acute and chronic conditions.
- Spending for home health care services is projected to exhibit the most rapid growth among discrete expenditure segments, with expected annual increases of 6.6% through 2023, due to the lower costs associated with such services when compared to nursing homes and considering the desire of many people to remain in their homes.
Medical device provider ResMed found 56% of Americans currently monitor their health with at least one digital data collection tool. Also, 60% of people attempt to diagnose themselves after browsing symptoms on the internet - including 76% of Millennials. Other findings include:
- Over half of those surveyed agree that technology has improved their relationship with their primary care provider, and many would like to be able to communicate with their physician more often.
- 87% of sleep apnea devices users are adherent to therapy when remotely and self-monitored, compared to roughly 50% on non-cloud connected devices.
- A digital sensor tracking a patient’s inhaler use for asthma or COPD can improve adherence up to 58%, increase symptom-free days 48% and reduce ER visits by 53%.
Six years after the launch of health insurance exchanges as part of the ACA, Americans report they're satisfied with their health care options, according to a survey by Transamerica Center for Health Studies. Key findings include:
- The percentage of adults reporting they're uninsured remains at 13%. Adults who say they're uninsured tend to be younger, people of color, have lower household incomes and report being in poorer health.
- Of those who didn't previously have health insurance, the most common sources of coverage are employers (41%) and state programs (28% up from 18% in 2018).
- Over two in five (42%) Americans have a positive impression of the ACA, with Black/African American adults more likely to have a very positive impression of the ACA (35% vs. 17% White, 25% Latino, 19% Asian/Pacific Islander and 18% other).
- Half of employed adults (51%) agree they have to stay at their current job for health insurance.
- Being able to pay for necessary care (32%) and being seen in a timely manner (28%) are by far the most important to Americans.
- Privately insured adults are more likely to pay out-of-pocket expenses with savings (37% vs. 18%), credit cards (36% vs. 19%), disposable income (28% vs. 16%), or 401(k) withdrawals (10% vs. 4%) compared to those covered by public plans.
CVS Health announced an agreement with UPS to evaluate a system for delivering prescriptions and retail products to customers' homes via drone. Other health care organizations signing deals with UPS include Kaiser Permanente, University of Utah Health, and AmerisourceBergen.
To support these health care-related organizations, UPS is also launching a business unit dedicated to health care, which will feature technology services aimed at helping customers track drone shipments.