Health Care Costs

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Government analysts predict that within a decade, one out of every five dollars will be spent on health care. By then, the nation's total health care bill is expected to be more than four (tr) trillion dollars a year. About half will come from consumers, the other half from government.

The researchers expect hospital costs to go up more quickly than had been expected. But drug costs are expected to be lower, because people are relying more on generic drugs, and because insurers were
able to negotiate steeper discounts under the new Medicare drug

The projections appear in the journal Health Affairs, even as President Bush calls on Americans to confront the rising cost of health care.