Date of Publication:

November 17, 2015

Written and produced by Health2 Resources for the Primary Care Learning Network.

How much does health care cost?

The short answer is staggering: In the U.S., we will spend $3.207 trillion in 2015.1 That’s $3,207 with nine zeroes behind it—a number so large that it’s nearly impossible to comprehend.

Think of it this way: If you had a dollar for every second that passed, it would take you 101,693 years to accumulate $3.207 trillion. As of this writing, the U.S. total population
is 321.2 million. With a new person added to our census every 12 seconds, we are fast approaching health care costs totaling $10,000 for every man, woman and child
living in the U.S.

That’s $10,000 for each of us, every year. For employers, that’s an expense allocated to benefits rather than wages.