(This Dec. 5 story corrects first paragraph to say growth was slower not declined in previous years, removes reference to projected spending in eighth paragraph)
(Reuters) – U.S. healthcare spending grew faster in 2018 after two slower growth years, a government health agency reported on Thursday.
The total national health expenditures last year grew 4.6% to $3.6 trillion, or $11,172 per person, boosted by faster growth in private health insurance and government-sponsored health insurance programs, the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) said.
The federal government and households were the largest sponsors, each contributing 28% to the total spending in the year.
The cost of health as a share of the economy decreased 0.2 points to 17.7% in 2018.
Increased net costs drove up private health insurance spending by 5.8% to $1.2 trillion in 2018, faster than the 4.9% growth in the year before.
Consumers also paid more out-of-pocket for retail prescription drugs,…
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