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Medical costs keep going up

May 30, 2012
The Journal

To the editor:

Dr. Uwe E. Reinhardt wrote an article in the business section of the New York Times on May 25, 2012 discussing the Fork in the Road for Health Care. He quoted from the Millman Medical Index on the average annual medical cost for a family of four under age 65 who were covered by private employer based health insurance. In 2001, the average cost was $8,414, but by 2012 it had risen to $20,728. The median income distribution in 2010 showed that 50 percent of American households had a money income of roughly $50,000 or less.

The increasing cost shifting by employers, both public and private, brought on by increasing health care costs is resulting in higher health insurance deductibles, co-pays, and out-of-pocket expenses, which is especially problematic for those in the lower half of the income distribution.

I encourage everyone to go to the New York Times website and read the original article.

Your editorial of 5/24/12 hoped that the Supreme Court would overturn the Health Care Reform Act passed in 2010 by the Congress and signed by President Obama. You may come to regret what you wish for, as health care costs continue to spiral upward and more and more people are unable to afford adequate health care insurance.

John W. Kluge, M.D.

New Ulm



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