As one of the largest industries around the world and especially in the United States, the health care industry is often under a microscope. In the US, this is because of the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, which is popularly known as Obamacare. Around the world, it is often because of dramatic stories that exist about a perceived lack of good care.
Healthcare Industry Statistics
In 2006, the health care industry in the United States was responsible for 14 million jobs.
What is unique about the modern health care industry is that you don’t have to be affiliated with a local health care organization, group, or in government sponsored care in order to find quality employment. In the US, for example, more than 400,000 jobs in this industry originated because of self-employment. That gives everyone who has the desire to care for others the chance to work within this field.
Facts to Know Right Now
1. In the health care industry, hospitals are the largest employer. Nearly 35% of all workers are employed by hospitals today.
2. The largest concentration of health care facilities are in Florida, New York, California, Pennsylvania, and Texas.
3. The industry in the United States is responsible for $2.8 trillion in revenue.
Takeaway: What is unique about the health care industry is in how it is funded globally. In the United States, for example, a combination of taxes and private payment plans works in conjunction with health insurance to provide needed coverage. In other countries there is more of an emphasis on taxpayer related services with total pay options for private use.
Other Facts to Consider About This Industry
1. In the United States, medical bills are the primary reason behind 60% of personal bankruptcies that are filed each year.
2. 3 out of every 4 people who go bankrupt because of medical bills actually have some form of health insurance.
3. Insurance companies can negotiate with hospitals to reduce bills by up to 95%, but if a patient arrives without insurance, they’re responsible for the full amount.
4. The health insurance premiums in the United States for small employers rose over 180% in the last decade.
5. When almost every industry sector saw declines during the recession of 2008-2009, the health care industry boosted profits by 56%.
6. Wages in the United States increased by 3.8% from 2000-2006, but health care premiums rose by 87%.
7. Americans spend twice as much on health care as residents of other developed countries.
Takeaway: Is health care a right? Is it something that everyone should be forced to have or be considered in violation of the law? These are the fundamental questions of the ACA and there’s no easy answer to find because there are deep-seated feelings on both sides of the aisle. There is one thing that is for certain about the health care industry: it could be better. That’s what the ACA is attempting to do for Americans, but whether or not it will actually work to do so is still up for debate.
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