The U.S. healthcare system remains broken and the root of these problems is lost in the 2020 presidential race as Americans spent $3.6 trillion on healthcare last year and it will not get cheaper, according to Axios.
As the right and left debate "how best to cover the uninsured" and the "relative virtue of healthcare choice," the reality is it will be getting more and more expensive regardless, per the report in Axios' "What Matters 2020" series.
"Voters want their healthcare costs reduced, but that doesn't mean they would necessarily support what it would take to make that happen," Kaiser Family Foundation Executive VP Larry Levitt told Axios.
The Axios report focused on the areas of rising costs, including hospitals (accounting for $1 trillion of the costs last year) and drug companies (the most profitable sector of healthcare).
Healthcare is big business and its political arguments on both sides are, too, per Axios.
"It's a tacit acknowledgment of two realities: That controlling the cost of care is imperative, and that talking about taking money away from doctors and hospitals is a big political risk," Axios' Sam Baker wrote.
"The healthcare industry has blanketed Iowa with ads, and is prepared to spend millions more, to defend the very profitable status quo," he added.
"The argument is simple: Reframe the big-picture debate about costs as a threat to your doctor or your hospital. It's an easy playbook that both parties, and the industry, know well. And it usually works."
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