State Health Spending Gap Widens
A federal report details health spending by the states.
Kaiser Health News: CMS: States' Health Spending Gap Widens
A government report released Wednesday offers the first snapshot of state-by-state health care spending since the recession, as well as a look at where provisions of the 2010 health law could have their greatest effect (Torres, 12/7).
CQ HealthBeat: States' Health Care Spending Gap Grows, Says CMS Report
A state-by-state breakdown of estimated health care spending found that the gap is broadening between the highest-spending and lowest-spending states, an economist with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said Wednesday. Between 2005 and 2009, states with the highest level of personal health care spending per capita saw those levels grow faster than the national average, while states with the lowest levels grew more slowly, said Gigi Cuckler, an economist with the office of the actuary at CMS, in a webcast produced by the Kaiser Family Foundation (Norman, 12/7).
Los Angeles Times: California's Health Care Spending Per Person Among Lowest In U.S.
For more evidence that the Golden State has lost some of its luster, consider this news from the federal government: California spends less per person on health care than all but eight states. New data show that total spending by insurers, government agencies and individuals amounted to $6,238 per resident in 2009, well below the national average of $6,815 (Helfand, 12/7).
Modern Healthcare: Mass., Alaska Tops In Health Care Spending
In the past decade, states with the highest per-capita health care spending tended to have older populations and higher per-capita incomes, while states that spent less on health care had younger populations, lower per-capita incomes and a higher rate of uninsured, says a report from the CMS. Ten states ... had the highest level of spending in 2009, and the per-capita spending for these states ranged from 15 percent to 36 percent higher than the average U.S. per capital spending level of $6,815 from $7,730 in Pennsylvania to $9,278 for Massachusetts. And income levels appeared to have a "positive relationship" with health spending, the report noted (Zigmond, 12/7).
Bloomberg/The Seattle Times: Massachusetts Rated Top Health-Care Spender
Massachusetts, where a higher percentage of the population has health insurance than anywhere else in the U.S., spent more per person than any state on medical care, a new report shows. Massachusetts spent about $9,278 per resident on health care in 2009, according to a study in the journal Medicare and Medicaid Research Review, published by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Health-care expenditures were 85 percent higher in Massachusetts than Utah, which spent the least per person: $5,031 (Wayne, 12/7).
In other news regarding states and their health systems:
Medscape: Physician Office Wait Times Are Longest in South
States in the Southeast have the longest wait times, at 23.5 minutes on average, in the nation, according to a new report by Vitals, a physician-rating Web site. ... The second-longest waits are in the Southwest (21.72 minutes), followed by the Northeast (21.17 minutes), West (19.33 minutes), and Midwest (18.87 minutes) (Lowes, 12/7).
New Hampshire Public Radio: Kids Lose Private Health Insurance
New data from the U.S. Census shows that in 35 states the number of children enrolled in private health insurance has declined. Between 2009 and 2010 1.6 million kids lost coverage. Researchers at the University of New Hampshire's Carsey Institute can't pinpoint the primary cause behind the drop in private insurance (Gorenstein, 12/7).