KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Report Finds Hundreds Of Billions Of Dollars Of Waste In U.S. Healthcare System

The U.S. health care system wastes between $505 billion and $850 billion every year, according to a new report from Thomson Reuters, the parent company of the Reuters news service. "The U.S. healthcare system is just as wasteful as President Barack Obama says it is, and proposed reforms could be paid for by fixing some of the most obvious inefficiencies, preventing mistakes and fighting fraud, according to a Thomson Reuters report released on Monday," Reuters reports. The report cites several examples of waste including in paper-based records systems, unnecessary care, fraud, administrative inefficiency, medical mistakes and preventable conditions.

"All this could help explain why Americans spend more per capita and the highest percentage of GDP on healthcare than any other (Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development) country, yet has an unhealthier population with more diabetes, obesity and heart disease and higher rates of neonatal births than other developed nations" (Fox, 10/26).

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