US Healthcare industry an Overview

US Healthcare industry an Overview

Are you at cross-roads regarding which profession to adopt? If you are in the United States, then charting your course to become a physician is your best bet. And it’s a noble profession to boot. A physician in US makes $218,173 per year, while in other developed nations it averages to $106,607. There are 2.6 doctors per 1000 patients and there will be 54,700 unfilled posts for physicians by 2028. Read on – US healthcare industry an overview.

Recommended high-priority preventive services availed in various age groups

US Healthcare industry an overview

As per the bar-chart, only 8% of the population availed high priority preventive services. This does not augur well for a medical industry that prides itself to be among the best. It would also be worth looking at the reasons for such low numbers.

US healthcare industry an overview

The healthcare industry includes a range of players like hospitals, doctors, nursing homes, pharmacies, diagnostic laboratories, medical device manufacturers, dentists, psychiatrist, pharmacists, and many other components of the health care system.

On the right find the average hourly wage rates as per the occupation in the healthcare industry.


Percentage Spent Spending Vertical
31 Hospital Care
21 Physician/Clinical Services
10 Pharmaceuticals
4 Dental
6 Nursing Homes
3 Home Health Care
7 Administrative Costs
6 Investment
6 Other Professional Services
3 Other Retail Products
3 Govt public health activities

For every dollar spent on healthcare, find above the details of percentage spent on each vertical.

US healthcare industry an overview

The US government does fund two kinds of health plans: the poor are insured by Medicaid and elderly by Medicare; as well as veterans and federal employees and Congressmen. State-run programs insure other public employees.

From the details of portion of medicaid spending, we can see that the largest share goes to the disabled, even though the portion of beneficiaries are less. And the least spending is on the aged.

However, many Americans have their healthcare paid for by their employer.

US healthcare industry an overview

In the above graph we have details of US population receiving medicaid benefits. The numbers keep rising which is a good trend.

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Health care in the US is provided by many distinct organizations. 58% of US community hospitals are non-profit, 21% are government owned, and 21% are for-profit.

Total health care spending in the U.S. was 19% of its GDP in 2018, the highest in the world.

US healthcare industry an overview

Increase in healthcare spending world-over in $ (Billions)

As depicted in the above picture, social determinants play a greater role than perceived earlier on the impact of health outcomes than does health care in itself. Healthcare alone will not suffice to get a ailing person healthy again.

In 2018, 48 per cent of U.S. health care spending came from private funds, with 28 per cent coming from households and 20 per cent coming from private businesses.

The annual growth expenditure on Healthcare saw a rise of 2.9% from 2013 to 2017. But from 2018 to 2022 it is projected to rise by 5.4%. And the factors responsible for the increase in mentioned.

Unbelievable facts of US healthcare industry an overview:

  • In the box on the right, find the annual personal healthcare spending per person for the given age group. The highest is in the age group on 85+ and the least up to the age of 18.
  • Because of its inefficiency, administrative cost is 8% of the overall healthcare costs. In other developed countries, it’s 1% to 3%.
  • Hospitalization and treatment for heart attack will cost you around $20,246.
  • Healthcare as a percentage of GDP has increased from 5% in 1960 to 18.2% in 2018.
  • Anti-cancer drug Avastin costs 10 times costlier as compared to what you will pay UK.
  • Americans are obese: 4 out of 10 are morbidly obese and 7 out of 10 are overweight. 300,000 premature deaths a year is due to obesity.
  • Obesity-related health issues cost over $150 billion a year in the US.
  • 4 million Americans went overseas for medical care in 2017 to get a better deal.
  • The number of uninsured Americans has dropped from 48.6 million in 2010 to 29.3 million in 2017.
  • In 2018, employers paid 75% of costs for healthcare while employees contributed the rest.
  • AI will revolutionize diagnostic practices.

US healthcare industry an overview


In the above graph you can notice how over a period of time the percentage of spending on Healthcare (in relation to total federal revenues) has taken a beating. The gap only widens as years pass by.

Uninsured 2015 2018
Number Portion of Uninsured Number Portion of Uninsured
Not a citizen 12,729 18.60% 11,874 16.10%
Income $50,000 to $74,999 11,652 16.60% 9,876 14.20%
Income $75,000 or more 18,857 19.20% 16,846 17.80%
Income of 50,000 or more 30,509 35.80% 26,722 32.10%

US healthcare industry an overview

In the above finding we can see that over the years the portion of uninsured has reduced. More numbers are opting for insurance.

On the right, in the box find the Federal Spending changes after the introduction of the Affordable Care Act (or Obamacare) – that is for the period in between 2010 to 2019.

The increase is right on track as the aim to include more people under insurance is having positive effects.

The top three causes of death among both sexes and all ages in the U.S. have consistently remained 1) cardiovascular diseases 2) neoplasms and 3) neurological disorders.

While there is no consensus as to the single cause of rising U.S. health care costs, experts have identified three contributing factors.

  1. The first is the cost of new technologies
  2.  Next high cost of prescription drugs
  3.  Finally high administrative costs.

The United States spends considerably more on health care than any other developed nation, but the quality of health care is much worse.

US healthcare industry an overview

From the above chart we can perceive the latest technology that would be inculcated into the healthcare industry.

The National Academy of Sciences found that among other high-income nations, the U.S. has a higher rate of chronic illness and a lower overall life expectancy.

Conclusion – US healthcare industry an overview

Healthcare policy effects the cost citizens must pay for care and their access to quality care. This can influence the overall health of a nation literally and economically. The rising cost of healthcare has placed an undeniable strain on the disposable income of citizens as well as on state budgets. Unless quality healthcare is easily accessible, the nation as a whole will suffer on all fronts.

US Healthcare Industry an Overview