What's getting expensive the fastest? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which includes detailed inflation data on hundreds of categories of goods and services, no price index is rising faster than hospital services.
But you don't need the BLS to tell you that health care is getting expensive. Employers know it, because they're paying the rising premiums. Workers know it, because those premiums are eating into our paychecks. Washington wonks know it, because Medicare is on pace to gobble up the entire budget later this century. The United States spends about $2.5 trillion -- one in every five or six dollars of GDP -- on health care. Here are ten graphs explaining where all that money is coming from, where it's going, and how it matches up against other countries.
1) U.S. AGAINST THE WORLD: SPENDING VS. LIFE EXPECTANCY
We spend much, much more per person than the rest of the world ... but we don't live much longer than some eastern European countries that spend much less than us. As a result, when you plot the United States against similarly advanced countries based on life expectancy and medical spending, we're all alone on our little island.