COVID-19 Causes Unprecedented Drop in Health Care Spending

So far in 2020, spending on health care services is down 2.4% compared to 2019, marking the first time that patient care expenditures have dropped since records became available in the 1960s, according to a recent analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation. In April when the first surge of coronavirus infections was at its peak, personal expenditures on health care services saw an unprecedented 31.9% decrease on an annualized basis. Among health care facilities, outpatient care centers and physicians’ offices experienced the largest drops in revenue year-to-date. The use of telemedicine services has increased dramatically during the pandemic, yet it was not large enough to offset drops in in-person care. The analysis suggested that though health care spending and utilization have rebounded, they could fall again if the current spike in COVID-19 cases causes hospitals and patients to put off elective care.

© 2021 MMIT

Jinghong Chen Reporter

Jinghong produces infographics and data stories on health insurance and specialty pharmacy for AIS Health. She graduated from Missouri School of Journalism with a focus on data journalism and international reporting. Before joining AIS in 2018, she worked at WBEZ, Al Jazeera English and The New York Times Chinese.

Related Posts
October 22

With COVID Testing Set to Surge, Insurers Fret About Costs

READ MORE‘Dance-Partners.jpg
October 22

Could Payers, Plan Sponsors Pick Retail ‘Dance Partners?’

READ MORE‘Virtual-First-Health-Plan-Fray.jpg
October 22

UnitedHealthcare, Cigna Join ‘Virtual-First’ Health Plan Fray

Read More


Sign up for publications to get unmatched business intelligence delivered to your inbox.

subscribe today